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Sustainable Last-Mile Delivery: Flipkart India

Flipkart announce plans to replace its current delivery fleet with electric vehicles in a push towards leading the push for sustainable last-mile delivery.

Flipkart is taking huge steps towards a sustainable last-mile delivery network in India. By 2020, the leading eCommerce player in India plans to replace at least 40% of its delivery fleet with electric vehicles.

Acquired by Walmart for USD 16 billion in 2018, Flipkart is fighting it out with Amazin to be the biggest eCommerce platform in India. With both stores tracking for a similar Gross Merchandise Value (GMV) of USD 11.2 billion in 2019, Flipkart sales grew 50% in this period. With continued GMV growth forecast, a sustainable last-mile delivery network could have a considerable impact on overall sustainability.

Our team is working with local ecosystem partners to help them co-design concepts for electric vehicles best suited for the growing e-commerce industry

Kalyan Krishnamurthy, Group CEO, Flipkart

Sustainable Last-Mile Options

With significant investment in both electric vehicles and charging infrastructure, Flipkart estimate they will have over 160 electric vans operational by the end of 2019. This will be supported further by electric bikes for densely populated areas. These tailored sustainable last-mile delivery options look to improve both performance and sustainability.

Flipkart Sustainable Last Mile Delivery Bikes
Flipkart Sustainable Last Mile Delivery Bikes. Source: https://www.flipkart.com/

This improvement in delivery performance is a key factor. As with all sustainability initiatives, if you can drive a business improvement alongside increasing sustainability, the overall impact can be compounded. This sustainable last-mile delivery scheme certainly seems to cover both criteria for the Flipkart business.

These efforts will help us meaningfully contribute towards electric mobility by reducing our dependence on conventional power sources while bringing cost efficiencies for the business

Amitesh Jha, Senior Vice-President, Ekart and Marketplace at Flipkart

Sustainable eCommerce India

Flipkart is not the only company in India looking at a more sustainable last-mile delivery option with Ikea recently announcing a similar scheme. Does this, therefore, beg the question as to why India seems to be leading the way in this field?

Although no conclusive reasoning, air pollution is a big issue in India here and now. This therefore potentially becomes a significant factor in the purchasing decision for consumers. As the affects of climate change begin to directly impact consumers across the globe, those leading the sustainability movement may find this becomes a key USP rather than solely a coorporate responsibility.

Read the full announcement here

Further Reading: Reusable Packaging: The Sustainable Future. Click Here

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