Ben Jackson, 24

“If you can push through the hard times, execute and learn to fall in love with the daily grind, rejection and obstacles, good things usually happen.”

In their own words
I’m the founder of Bungii. Bungii is an app that puts a truck at your fingertips to help move, haul & deliver stuff around town. Bungii has been compared to popular ride sharing apps but instead of moving people, Bungii moves people’s stuff.

My biggest “claim to fame” is Bungii, but it hasn’t been easy. A little over seven months ago, we launched the first version of Bungii, which we had been working on for over a year. We thought once we released the app, users would come to us. However, it was the exact opposite: we launched Bungii to crickets. The first week of Bungii, we completed four trips which equated to about $49 in our account. After months of work and thousands of dollars of software development, it was devastating. We questioned if we even had a viable business.

I spent the next four months with one focus: acquiring customers. It’s been a battle since day one, but I can now proudly say that we’ve seen incredible traction. Here are some highlights. We have: experienced an average of a 30% monthly growth for seven months straight, recently completed our 2000th trip, have over 50 drivers in the KC area, partnered with over 30 stores including Costco and Pottery Barn, added service to Lawrence, KS (and are expanding to a lot more cities soon), are going into a substantial $2.5M funding round, were selected as a finalist for the WeWork Creator Awards and recently won Silicon Prairie’s New Startup of the Year award.

In less than seven months of operating, Bungii has already left its fingerprint on the Kansas City community. Bungii is the vehicle that delivers fresh starts and new beginnings. We come alongside newlywed couples trying to furnish their new apartments, international college students who are in an unfamiliar country trying to move into their dorms and women moving out of domestic violence shelters, ready to give their lives a clean start. Bungii is vital for new beginnings and celebrates the first steps of change. We want to share Bungii with the world.

KC story

I’ve lived in Kansas City for a little over a year. Last May, I graduated from K-State and remember telling myself, “I’ll move anywhere except Kansas City.” As chance would have it, KC ended up being the perfect place to launch Bungii, so grudgingly I moved here. It took about two days before I fell in love with the city, and now I’m not sure that I’ll ever leave.

Kansas City’s friendly people, laid-back atmosphere, contagious sports teams and vibrant city make it an easy place to fall in love with. On top of that, a major part of Bungii’s success is directly related to all the support we’ve received from fellow Kansas Citians. It’s humbling and encouraging at the same time.

SoftBank’s $100B fund manager is right: Kansas City is a place people want to stay.

A day in the life

You know, I like to think of myself as the Chief Executive Firefighter. When it comes to starting businesses, there always seems to be fires popping up and as a leader, it’s your responsibility to put them out — and ensure they don’t flare up again.

When I don’t have a metaphorical fire extinguisher in my hand, my main responsibility is growth strategy. Essentially it comes down to one question: “How quickly and efficiently can Bungii scale nationwide?”

Legacy

There are two values that I try to pursue daily: relentless persistence and intellectual curiosity. Putting in the work, day in and day out, combined with a relentless pursuit to solve problems, like the one we faced in November when no one was using the app, has not only been necessary but the lifeline that pushes Bungii forward.

Whoa

I’ve been to more countries than I am old. I played a couple sports in high school and in Europe you would have to bring your passport to away games. Looking back, I chuckle to myself because here in Kansas City, you play Shawnee Mission West or Olathe South, but in Europe you compete against Germany or Italy.

Pro tip

I love Steve Jobs’ quote: “Everything around you that you call life was made up by people that were no smarter than you.” I believe that success, whatever that may look like for you, isn’t a matter of intelligence but rather a matter of grit. If you can push through the hard times, execute and learn to fall in love with the daily grind, rejection and obstacles, good things usually happen.