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Lori Systems is launching a service with the Kenyan government for last-mile haulage from railroads

For Lori Systems chief executive and co-founder Josh Sandler, deals like the one between his company and the Kenyan government to solve last-mile solutions around the national railroad are about far more than just logistics. Sandler, whose family battled apartheid in South Africa as social workers, township doctors and (more dangerously) as financiers for the Spear of the Nation (the armed wing of the African National Congress), looks at logistics as an economic cornerstone for building more stable and democratic societies in sub-Saharan Africa. His parents had immigrated to the U.S. in 1990 when Sandler was still a young child to escape the violence that accompanied the negotiations to dissolve South Africa’s apartheid state. Sandler’s father had worked as a doctor in township hospitals, while his mother was a social worker who was setting up a support network for abused children. “A lot of the family was getting arrested and the country was breaking up and people feared a civil war and my dad got a fellowship in America and moved to Florida,” Sandler says.  But South Africa remained the touchstone for Sandler’s family life and he would often return to visit those activist relatives who remained to help shepherd the country through its early years as a democracy. It was during one visit to the country — when Sandler was working in a refugee camp — that the need for better economic solutions to the region’s problems became clear. In the aftermath of the economic collapse of Zimbabwe and the long-simmering civil war in the Congo in 2008, refugees from the region were flooding into South Africa — and it triggered a response in the country’s citizens. Xenophobic violence resulted in rioting, looting and the murder of immigrants at camps — and Sandler had gone to volunteer at the shelters that were caring for these refugees. “I had been debating between investment banking and the peace corps and went with investment banking because there needs to be a macroeconomic solution for this,” Sandler said. “Finding the core challenges from a macro perspective and preventing this from occurring by establishing…



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Lori Systems is launching a service with the Kenyan government for last-mile haulage from railroads

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