Bill Cunningham of One More Pallet

Bill Cunningham is the CEO of One More Pallet, a Cincinnati-based shipping company that helps smaller businesses find inexpensive transportation for their products.
How did you start your business?
I started the business in 2012 after working on the idea for two years with a local freight carrier. The carrier averaged about 30-40 percent of empty space on its trucks, and the thought of adding “one more pallet” (or two or three or four) would significantly increase its profitability and productivity. Finding small pallet loads is a challenge and not very profitable for brokers and salespeople. By using technology and taking a cue from the travel industry, One More Pallet connects small, underserved shippers with trucking companies that have empty space—a win/win for both parties.
How did you come up with the idea for your business?
Sandy Ambrose, CEO of ESJ Enterprises, came up with the initial idea for her LTL business. After participating in Xavier University’s Launch-a-Business inaugural class, she decided that this business launch would require 150 percent of her time, and she offered to sell it to me.
What Cincinnati resources did you take advantage of and how did they help?
I’ve used every Cincinnati resource, including:

UpTech, for funding, marketing and building relationships
Greater Cincinnati Venture Association, for fundraising
Soapbox Media, who pioneered our initial story that resulted in our first customer in August 2012
Cintrifuse, for access to large companies, connections to funding sources and networking
Hamilton County Business Center, for entrepreneur networking and classes
The Circuit, for networking and classes
How is Cincinnati a unique city for entrepreneurs?
Cincinnati’s competitive advantage is access to large customers and great cost of living, as well as quality of life, the Midwest work ethic and collaborative networks that support entrepreneurs.
What is next for you and your company?
Just hard work to grow—it takes time to build a solid company. There are no shortcuts—you have to do the hard work, but it pays off in the long run. This region enables you to grow the company without competitive startups and investors breathing down your neck like on the coasts.

Interview by Sean Peters