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Friday, Jan 27, 2023
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Minneapolis Adopts Digital Mailboxes

Westlake Village-based Zumbox, creator of a web-based paperless postal system, recently launched its product in Minneapolis, Minn. This is the fourth city in the U.S. to adopt the system. Others include New York City, Newark, N.J., and San Francisco. “Minneapolis is an extremely important communications center of this country,” said Zumbox CEO, Donn Rappaport, in a press release. “And so we are very happy to welcome Mayor Ryback to the ranks of forward-thinking municipal leaders who are embracing paperless mail.” For every U.S. street address, there is a corresponding Zumbox – a digital mailbox – that enables postal mail to be sent as digital files and received online without the use of paper and scanning. The company said the system saves municipalities money on printing, paper, and postage. It’s also touted as an environmentally friendly alternative to paper mail. Zumbox said it provides the service to municipal and state governments free of charge, and there’s no cost for consumers to receive paperless mail. “Zumbox helps the City of Minneapolis operate more efficiently while also opening a new channel of communication with residents,” said Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak. The City is sending public notices and other municipal mail via Zumbox, and will notify residents about the paperless option through several different methods. Zumbox said the system will enable the city to send out letters, utility bills, public notices, newsletters, permits, videos and more to the digital mailboxes. Last August, Zumbox closed on a Series A round of funding. And in November, the company hired media veteran Peter O. Price to focus on developing partnerships with major print and electronic media companies. Price has served as director of corporate development for Time, Inc.; president of Media Networks; publisher of the New York Post; president of the National Sports Daily; president of Liberty Cable; and president of Television USA. In a recent Business Journal interview, Price said Zumbox’s model is the future of direct marketing. “The Internet has been aggressively exploited but many people still don’t know how to mine value,” said Price. “Zumbox’s lock box address opens up worlds beyond the Internet. You’re sending information to a named person, specific address and secure environment. It’s relevant to newspapers, magazines, television, books and more.”

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