X2X Electronic Divorce Record
Mark MacMahon, live in North Yarmouth, Maine (USA). 4 time entrepreneur starting his 5th business an internet software company focused bringing technology to the separation-divorce process. We have conducted a short interview with Mark.
Why did you choose to create a business dealing with separation-divorce process?
Divorce is a tumultuous time for the immediate family, 1 house becomes 2, money gets tight, you don’t see your kids every day and work effectiveness decreases. As I went through my divorce I experienced all these factors plus the emotions of divorcing. I have 50-50 custody of our kids and even on the weeks where I don’t see them a decent percentage of my off weeks is kid centric. All these factors lead up to a chaotic life where you never feel caught up. Even simple events like determining if I have the kids on a certain day in 3 months was challenging. My original idea was to create a simple app to manage the children’s schedule that I could share with my ex. As I went through the divorce process I learned more about the logistics and the app has evolved into the technology of an Electronic Divorce Record.
What inspires you to use technology to manage a personal issue as this?
Technology is slowly permeating our lives. Thirty years ago companies like AOL helped connect us to the internet. Consider that the first wave. Twenty years ago Google brought using the internet as a service to our lives, the second wave. Now technologies like X2X are a part of the 3rd wave where technology becomes part of our lives. At first it appears that using an app to manage your divorced life is impersonal, but look at the apps you have already –banking, calendar & social media. People are comfortable with having technology manage their lives; X2X is an extension of those existing technologies. A second part is cost. Divorced couples end up back in court and usually money is involved. That happens because the ex-partners drift away from the original agreement. X2X holds ex partners accountable to their agreement and keeps them from returning to court.
Which is the single most useful element of the service you are providing for couples in the divorce process? Why
X2X is currently pre-launch and our key features are proprietary and I am not willing to discuss specific features at this time. Intrinsic to the X2X is the idea of restoring normalcy to the post-separation post-divorce life of the ex-partners. X2X will help mitigate a lot of the complexities post-separation couples experience.
As an idea of scale it takes ex-couples with children 5 years post separation to return their lives back to normal. This relates directly to a cost to employers of around $42,000 over the 5 years in lost productivity. A Holmes and Rahe study found that divorce and separation were the 2nd and 3rd most stressful events you experience in life.
In your spare time, what do you volunteer your time for? Why did you choose this?
For several years I was the President of a local youth sports organization and the one thing I learned is that volunteers all have personal reasons as to why they volunteer. This is why it is so challenging to recruit volunteers, as you can never know what will resonate with someone that will get them to donate their time. 5 years ago my mother and brother were in a near fatal motor vehicle accident and if it wasn’t for the volunteers that stepped up to help, from bystanders to off duty nurses to the EMTs and paramedics, my brother would not be here. A couple of years post separation from my ex, the local fire department hosted an EMT class and if you agreed to volunteer for a year they would cover the cost. I signed up to become an EMT. Ultimately I decided to take another class to become an AEMT all so that I can pay forward what was already given back to my life.
What were your previous ventures or startups about? Did it affects your decision in creating this 5th company?
My previous companies were engineering and design consultancies. Some were successes and some were failures. They all attributed to life lessons that have helped shape the look and feel of X2X. The biggest difference between my past companies and X2X is that this one is much more personal as everyday I am reminded of my divorce and the struggles it created.
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