Courier firm in fast lane
ROD and Tracey Lawson, Fastway Couriers regional franchisees and owners of the Northern Rivers depot, are in the perfect position to take advantage of the current explosion in online shopping
With more Australians bypassing traditional retailers and shopping online, there is an increased number of small parcels being delivered direct to people's homes.
"There has been a real increase in residential as opposed to business-to-business deliveries," said Mr Lawson.
"Our residential deliveries have grown at least 30% over the past year."
National Australia Bank figures for the 12 months to November 2012 showed that Australians spent $12.6 billion online, with internet sales making up 5.7% of total retail spending.
In January, chief executive John Donahoe of eBay, the online auction site with nearly 100 million online users and shoppers, singled out Australia as one of its high-growth markets.
Mr Lawson said there was also a rise in the number of micro-entrepreneurs running businesses from home or the local industrial estate.
"The ability to dispatch their products using a company like ours helps these people to run their businesses," Mr Lawson said.
"The larger freight companies don't deliver door-to-door so, if not for us, they would have to line up at the post office to dispatch their goods."
The Lawsons have owned the franchise for the past seven years, in turn employing another 12 franchisees who own the vans that ultimately pick up and drop off the freight.
"We joined Fastway because of the ability to plug into their network," Mr Lawson said.
The Lawsons cover from Mullumbimby and Ocean Shores south to Grafton and inland to Casino and Kyogle, carrying up to 25kg.
Over the years, Mr Lawson has moved some unusual cargo including day-old chickens, yabbies and even a live snake
"It travelled in a very well sealed cardboard box with air holes," said Mr Lawson.