BusinessDay

Zipline partners Jumia to pioneer drone delivery of products across Africa

Jumia, an e-commerce platform in Africa, and Zipline, an instant delivery service, has announced a collaboration to deploy automated, on-demand delivery for e-commerce in Africa, after the pilot program and testing were launched a few months ago in Ghana.

According to the companies, the collaboration will integrate Zipline’s automated, on-demand delivery system with Jumia’s existing distribution network to enable customers to receive instant, on-demand delivery of the exact products of their choice and when they want them, from the comfort of their homes.

“Using the latest instant logistics technology will allow Jumia to offer our consumers on-demand delivery of the products they need – instantly. Whether they’re ordering electronics, fashion, health, and beauty, or other categories, Zipline’s instant logistics system will provide fast and convenient access.

“This will support Jumia’s commitment to sustainability and innovation and provide much-needed access to rural and remote areas where conventional delivery services have challenges,” Apoorva Kumar, EVP Jumia, Group COO, said.

The companies also stated that an initial pilot was carried out across multiple use cases with varying product assortment logging up to 2,500km in testing. Deliveries to outlying Jumia hubs as far as 85km from the take-off location at the Zipline operational hub in Omenako (Ghana) were completed in less than one hour with real time visibility of the drone for all stakeholders in the delivery cycle. Eventual plans call for expansion to Cote d’Ivoire and Nigeria, and ultimately to other countries in the future.

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“Zipline is pleased to partner with Jumia to use instant logistics to improve the lives of customers across Africa. This collaboration will increase access to goods for customers and help small and medium sized businesses grow. Zipline’s safe and efficient instant logistics system will make shopping on Jumia even more convenient, sustainable and accessible for its customers,” Daniel Marfo, SVP – Zipline Africa, said.

Jumia’s logistics network includes over 30 warehouses and over 3,000 drop-off stations and pick-up stations, located across Jumia’s 11-country market. In 2020, Jumia announced that its logistics service would now be available to third parties seeking to leverage the network, technology, and expertise for last-mile deliveries across its 11 countries in Africa.

For Zipline, its instant logistics system is made up of an autonomy platform, fleet of light, electric aircraft, and flight management systems that reduce green-house gas emissions by 98 percent compared to delivery by car.

This system is designed to enable all consumers, from the most urban to the most remote, to access the products they need in 45-minutes or less while reducing the carbon emissions of last-mile delivery up to 98 percent compared to traditional cars.

Jumia says its partnership with Zipline is part of its commitment to providing affordable and eco-friendly delivery of online orders for consumers. In addition to its partnership with Zipline, Jumia works with Solar Taxi in Ghana and eBee in Kenya to achieve a fully green footprint using clean and sustainable renewable energy

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