The beginners at interstellar trade and transport are the fledgling lines. Some are free traders who have been diligent enough (or lucky enough) to make some money, and that money has been invested in additional ships. Others are veterans of the larger lines, now gone into business for themselves. Still others are partnerships, usually of several independent ship owners who have banded together to create a merchant line. A few are just businessmen, lucky enough to be awarded a merchant subsidy, and are now trying to make it turn a profit.
Nine out of ten fledgling lines fail within the first five years. Of those remaining, nine out of ten barely break even. That one of a hundred remaining, however, eventually moves up to a higher standard - perhaps as an interface line, perhaps as a subsector-wide line. Fledgling lines are the most common lines, the most risky, and have the greatest potential, however slim the chance of achievement.
An example of a fledgling line is UTP.
(BOOK-7: p7, 1109)
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