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Chapter 259 - What Could Go Wrong[]

Inman (Federated Commonwealth)
1st February, 3047

"My name is Sarah Campbell and I am the new owner. You are all a part of Outback Shipping. There will be some changes, some not everyone will like, but they are changes that are going to happen. The first change is we will be operating six Merchant Jumpships and my Invader Jumpship. I have sold the Monolith and Star Lord Jumpships. The lack of maintenance sites this far out is an expense I do not want. At least the Merchant Jumpships can get maintenance at any Olympus station. I have also sold off two of our Mammoth Cargo Dropships to the same outfit. I made this decision after a careful examination of your records. We cannot afford to sail partially loaded, which was a common occurrence in your past. In place of the Mammoths, I have purchased six Mule Cargo Dropships."

"Some of you might doubt these changes, but I assure you, we will make a profit. We will sail on time and fully loaded. Too many times the Jumpships had two or more collars empty. The Mammoths usually were half loaded. This is wasted space and wasted money. The two Mammoth I kept usually fly fully loaded carrying bulk ores, so they are being kept for that purpose. We are not operating in the heart of the Commonwealth but on the rim of it, we do not need the larger vessels for out here. Not for the quantities usually moved. I hope that changes and if it does, we will purchase larger ships once again but until that happens, we operate smartly.

"I have also done some research on passenger travel, and I was surprised at my findings. This particular cargo is an under-served market and one I expect to exploit to the fullest. We will not be flying Monarch Passenger Liner Dropships, those are for luxury cruises. No, we will be moving the millions of people in search of a better life, which seems to happen quite a lot out here. The average passenger travels 3 jumps, mostly packed in steerage quarters. Two of our new Mules are being converted to carry 1,000 passengers each in second class quarters. Much more comfortable for the passengers when you are spending a month in transit. I plan to charge 500 C-bills per passenger for a single jump, but multi jump passengers will be paying 1,000 C-bills per jump. I can justify this because we will be stocking foods passengers want to eat for the trip. Discounts will be available for families, so we will still be friendly on the wallet."

"My research says that on any single month, there are 1 to 3,000 passengers waiting on any planet waiting transport to somewhere. We should be able to sail fully loaded at every destination. I could not find a single carrier that offered this sort of passenger service and if it goes the way I think it will go, we might transition completely to an all-passenger service. Instead of making 100,000 per jump on a fully loaded Merchant, we will be making 500 to 1 million per jump per Dropship. People, this is how we will prosper and grow. This is the future of Outback Shipping that I see. I hope to meet all of you at some point." she concluded her speech.

Sarah Campbell exited the small stage setup at the Inman Commercial Space Port and walked over to where the crews from SaRI were standing. "How did I do?"

"You did fine. There are a few not very happy looking, but most look like they are happy to not have to job hunt." Captain Curtis Obrien said

"Good, you set to head back to Thazi?" Sarah Campbell asked

"Yes, Ma'am. Don't hold it against is for changing our mind on you during the trip. Guess we still have too much military in us to give it up." Captain Curtis Obrien said

"Not at all. Plus, the bonus money was very nice. You folks get back up there and hit the road. Don't forget to swing by Inner End and pick up everything waiting to head out to Thazi. Stay safe all of you, it has been a pleasure serving with all of you. When you get tired of playing out there, you have a home here if you want one." Sarah Campbell said as she hugged each of the 83 crew heading back to Thazi.

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