Business Ideas in the Transportation Industry

by David Gaudreault, Serial Entrepreneur, Online Marketer and Personal Branding Passionate

In this article, I give breakthrough business ideas in the transportation industry. One opportunity is hot and waiting for some serious entrepreneurs to grab it and others are undisputed trends that will be a the center of multiple future opportunities. These ideas could pretty much be the source of inspiration for your next big idea!

Idea Number 1: Disrupt the School Bus Industry

School buses are dangerous. Thinking that one vehicle can stop the traffic in a multi-lanes arrangement with a single stop sign is ridiculous. Traffic is constantly heavier and distractions on the road are all over the place. Even with the best intentions and safe driving habits, someone can have a distraction, miss the stop sign and hit a child.

Unfortunately, it happens, it is totally unacceptable, but we see it is the news every year. You might be thinking that our governments could change the regulations to fix the problem, but that’s not going to happen. And if it does happen, the alternative solutions will not be up to the expectations and will not represent a significant incremental improvement because governments don’t do customer discovery, don’t innovate and don’t take any risks. They do roundtables and come up with 600-page law projects that are barely addressing the real issues.

You, however, with your future startup, you could provide an alternative to the school bus safety issues and disrupt this industry. You can make things moving toward a real change. I’m not talking about coming up with a new safety device for buses, I’m talking about replacing the school transportation system with a better alternative.

Let’s see it this way. There is no reason a child should cross the road, period! He should be taken up from home and brought directly at the school doors. It’s insane that being five minutes late means missing the bus and 10 minutes early means waiting outside at -30 degrees in winter. It’s astonishing to think that there is no seat belt in a bus, that one driver who should be driving and put his attention on the road, is also in charge of 20 kids. It also amazes me that buses block the traffic and cause traffic jams in cities that could easily be avoided! They block the traffic even when the kids don’t cross the road!

This is an industry that did not evolve in over 40 years and need to be disrupted. There is room for improvements in this sector, and I’m giving you this insight on a silver platter. Now your role is to think about it, use your creativity and come up with a new alternative, a better concept that will bring a significant improvement to this deficient system.

Obviously, there are easy fixes, like adding seat belts or an adult supervisor in the bus. However, this is the obvious and the big opportunity is never found in the obvious. Rethink completely the system and come up with something innovative. I strongly believe that if you investigate in this direction, you might find your big idea.

Idea Number 2: Long-haul Freight Truck industry

A good tip to find opportunities is to always to observe the trends and look for eminent industry changes. Freight trucks are all over the place, they cause traffic slow-downs, deadly accidents, contribute to global air pollution and damage the roads. However, we need supplies and they are an essential link to the chain. That being said, in this sector, there are:

  1. room for improvement and
  2. strong trends showing that this industry will face major changes in the future.

Although I believe drivers will still be needed for the local distribution, there are enormous chances that Long-haul freight truck drivers will be replaced by autonomous driving systems in the future. With the electrification of cars and the arrival of electrified roads, in the medium terms, it is also very likely that all trucks become electric and auto charged by electrified road.

Have you heard about it? The World’s first electrified road for charging vehicles recently opened in Sweden. It means we are not far away from being able to charge long-haul freight trucks with an electrified road system. If you want to know more about the Sweden electrified road you can read this article from TheGuardian here.

When an imminent systemic change like this is likely to occur, it usually hides multiple business opportunities. For example, these autonomous trucks will need to be controlled by a control center, it means advanced control and fleet management software will be required. Systems capable of communicating with the autonomous system and give them directives and orders. If I’m right and companies keep local drivers for local distribution, to keep some flexibility in the routing and a human contact with the customers, then transit centers will be required around the cities where drivers will pick up the trucks for local distribution in the city. There might be some real estate opportunities on this side.

Idea Number 3: Driverless autonomous cars

Driverless autonomous cars are coming, we all know it. Uber is already running some experiments in Pittsburgh and it is a question of time before it becomes a global adoption. This change will drive a lot of opportunities as the entire circulation system will become obsolete. As long as both manned and unmanned cars are on the road together, the current model makes sense, but one day a few streets, then some areas of the city and eventually entire cities and highways will be reserved to autonomous cars. This day, the entire circulation model will have to be reviewed.

What’s the point of having speed limit signs if it can be stored in the memory of the car? What’s the point of having road patrols when all cars are pre-programmed to respect the rules? As a side note, you can see that Cities will lose a major funding source from traffic and parking tickets, and a lot of road dedicated workers will also lose their jobs. On the other hand, if you don’t need to drive you don’t need a driver seat. In fact, the entire interior design of the car can be modified. If you don’t drive, you can be entertained, you can work and you could even exercise or have breakfast in the car. Car interior design might soon become a trendy job!

Once again these systemic changes hide a huge amount of opportunities. For sure all these cars will need to talk to each other because by adding communication capabilities to cars you can achieve a perfect synchronization between cars and allow a much higher car density on the roads. Higher density means that the same amount of roads can carry more cars without traffic jams, which means a reduction in infrastructure, maintenance, and new road construction needs.

Therefore, a control system capable of processing the traffic data in real time and syncing the cars to optimize the traffic effectiveness could very soon be one big opportunity!

Friendly Warning

Now, listen up! I’ve got to say something very important. The school bus industry is ready to be disrupted, there is no doubt about it, but the other two trends and related opportunities will arise from a change that did not yet occur or that is currently being adopted and the adoption will continue for who knows how many years. Such situations are very different from an opportunity that is mature and ready to be seized.

In my post on how to find breakthrough business ideas, I talk about the timing question. Is now a good time to implement your business idea? Sometimes, you’ve got your big idea, but the market is not yet ready for it. If you design a control system for autonomous cars in the years to come, chances are you will have to put your baby on a shelf for the next 10 years before the market is ready for it. If you have a lot of money, you may be able to wait until the opportunity arises, but most entrepreneurs don’t have this freedom and they need to use creative ways to buy some time.

For example, you could identify another opportunity that will allow you to develop the basis of a control system. It can be for another application, but it will be the first step toward your ultimate goal, to position your company to be ready when the moment comes.

If you are interested, please subscribe to my Facebook page and YouTube channel “David’s way” where I post weekly videos featuring more business ideas, pieces of advice, technical tutorials, Q&As and much more.

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Who is David Gaudreault?

David Gaudreault Bio - David's Way

I'm an entrepreneur, a maker, an online marketer...and Personal branding passionate.

I help entrepreneurs develop two essentials for building a successful startup: (1) building a strong personal brand and (2) building solid foundations of passive incomes to gain professional freedom.

I also help entrepreneurs find their big ideas, execute them right, impact millions with their businesses, and change the world.

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