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Mark Hackl ’89 won the Rise of the Rest competition and was awarded a $100,000 investment for his startup company Lanehub Inc., which aims to make shipping more efficient for companies.

Alumnus’ Startup Gets Boost From $100,000 Investment Prize

A St. Norbert alumnus recently claimed the top prize in a startup-pitch competition, beating out seven other finalists who were chosen from a pool of more than 100 applicants.

Mark Hackl ’89 was awarded a $100,000 investment from AOL co-founder Steve Case in early October for his Green Bay-based company Lanehub Inc., a strategic networking tool for transportation professionals that connects shippers and carriers.

The startup-pitch competition was part of the Rise of the Rest tour, organized by venture-capital firm Revolution, of which Case is chairman. The tour’s goal is to highlight emerging-innovation communities in areas that are not considered to be hubs for tech startups.

“Winning the pitch competition was an unexpected surprise that has really helped propel our business forward, especially as it relates to connecting with new investors to grow the company,” says Hackl, founder and CEO of Lanehub. “The recognition has created a much higher level of awareness about our Green Bay-based startup.”

Hackl calls Lanehub the “social network for transportation.” Its aim is to connect businesses with the right companies to find complementary freight lanes – helping companies save money by improving efficiency, like eliminating return trips of empty trucks – and to build long-term partnerships. Schreiber Foods, Procter & Gamble, and Anheuser-Busch are among the companies that use the transportation networking tool.

Lanehub launched in 2015 thanks in part to local investors, Hackl says. Now Hackl is working to raise $1 million for the company’s next phase, which will focus on growth and includes hiring more employees and investing in more technology. The Rise of the Rest competition has given Lanehub a boost in raising those funds, Hackl says.

“The local investors have been fantastic to work with. We’ve worked with the NEW Venture Foundry to successfully launch the company,” he says. “When we need to tap into larger funds, we now have the ability to connect with additional venture capital firms outside of our local area.”

Prior to founding the company, Hackl was director of Schreiber Foods’ transportation team. He also participated on the board of directors for the Food Shippers of America. Hackl has more than 20 years of experience in the industry.


Dec. 5, 2017