Today, Pol Sancho, the founder of the Online Motorsports Marketplace, has joined us. GPBox.. Former F1 senior stress engineer and working at Manners, Force India and Renault, Pol brings F1 excellence and competitiveness to the world of e-commerce.
click here To subscribe to our print version!
Less than two years after coming up with the idea, GPBox has grown into one of the world’s leading markets for motorsport souvenirs, models and artwork, with sellers from more than 20 countries listing 42,000 products.
Pol, who is currently spending time between his Oxford home and Barcelona, who has completed an EMBA, is one of the emerging motorsport entrepreneurs and is drawing attention in 2021.
What is GPBox?
GPBox is an online marketplace that brings together motorsport sellers around the world and provides a platform for selling products to a motorsport-focused audience.
GPBox is an easy-to-use platform for setting up an online store, especially for sellers who may not be tech-savvy. We provide an easy way to sell your products by leveraging the collective power of a large and intensive market, specially designed to reach motorsport fans. We have a really positive and direct relationship with the seller, they are very embraced of our ideas, generous with their productive feedback and I am very proud of the results.
What is the path that led you from the paddock to the world of e-commerce?
After earning two master’s degrees in mechanical design and automotive engineering from the School of Industrial Engineering of Barcelona, he moved to the United Kingdom to study at Oxford Brookes University and earned a master’s degree in motorsports engineering. It wasn’t until the end of Master that I had the opportunity to move to F1.
During the rebuilding of the team, he first participated in motorsport at Marussia / Manor Racing and tried to legalize a year-old car within the limits of current regulations. Unfortunately, the team collapsed and after a short mission at Force India, I became a senior stress engineer for the Renault F1 Team in January 2018.
As a senior stress engineer, I was in charge of the front of an F1 car consisting of more than 11,000 parts. One of the things I liked the most in my time was ownership. It doesn’t feel better than seeing your parts made and assembled.
But from the very beginning of my career, I knew that I would be most successful when working for myself on a project I was passionate about. The rapid success of GPBox has made that possible. Our team has all the skills you need to keep your site growing and optimize the seller and customer experience.
Where did the GPBox idea come from?
The idea came from a conversation with partner Georgina, who actually found it very frustrating to find a motorsport-themed Christmas gift. Motorsport souvenirs range from model cars to parts and furniture used in high-end racing. In addition, the market for so many talented artists is expanding. In addition to providing the long-awaited service to motorsport fans, all sellers need to combine them into one platform to profit from building a one-stop shop for motorsport fans. I noticed immediately. Come and find almost anything they can think of.
Did you practice GPBox very much and actually built the first version of the site yourself?
I firmly believe in continuing education, whether by completing an EMBA or in a small way that I can create opportunities to learn new skills myself. GPBox started as the latter. To build the first version of GPBox, I had to learn to code from scratch. I knew what I wanted to make, but I was effectively learning a whole new language. I remember sitting on the carpet in the living room and writing (and rewriting) the first line of code. My partner also remembers a lot of taunts, but it was an exciting time to discover!
Learning the code is one of the most liberating and rewarding experiences of my life outside of F1. Not only does it provide the basic tools for building almost anything, but unlike motorsport, you don’t have to wait until the weekend for feedback on what you’ve created. Feedback is given instantly anyway, which has helped us grow rapidly.
GPBox was launched on March 6, 2018, and it was very exciting with 374 visitors on the first day. Within 18 months, it has grown to over 1 million product views and customers in more than 40 countries.
What is the biggest way living in Formula One has influenced your approach to business?
One of the biggest things I’ve noticed when working in Formula One is that the engineering issues are the same whether you’re competing for victory or racing behind. The distinguishing factor is the resources available to solve these problems.
In the engineering world, there are general rules known as the 80-20 principle. This essentially claims that 80% of the performance is from the first 20% of the time entered. The real difficulty after that is how to determine when a part or product is good enough. I hate wasting time, so the challenge is to identify and prioritize potentially the most productive inputs.
As a training engineer, I really enjoy returning to working with GPBox to First Principles and actually exploring ways to improve and improve the platform in the most efficient way for sellers and customers. I am a very motivated and competitive person and ultimately helped me realize my dream of working in the F1 world. And now I bring the same spirit to GP Box.
Tell us more about the team behind GPBox.
GPBox is managed by a small team of very creative people. I believe in finding someone who has the skills and motivation to learn and create. It is very important to provide an environment where people can play an important role and enjoy creative problem solving.
As many people become aware of it in 2020, remotework offers so many opportunities for creativity and collaboration with new people around the world. We have this principle from the beginning, find people who are talented and excited about their ideas, and collaborate from different countries throughout Europe.
In addition to Georgina and me, our core team includes creative director Andrew Myles and product designer Dennis Schmidt. Together, they are bringing GPBox to a platform with a strong brand and a high-quality, easy-to-use site to prepare for sellers and customers.
Growth and future
We are in a fortunate position to keep up with the rapid rise in interest in the site. GPBox rushed to the mainstream motorsport audience last year. As a result, we are looking for investments to keep growing. In November, over 6,500 new products were added to GPBox. This is an absolute record of new products per day. Coupled with the high interest from investors so far, this kind of organic growth shows great interest in what we are doing for both sellers and motorsport fans.
Porsancho | Motorsports Marketplace
https://www.thepaddockmagazine.com/pol-sancho-motorsports-entrepreneur/ Porsancho | Motorsports Marketplace