Indian ecommerce unicorn Flipkart on Thursday announced nationwide plans to introduce electric vehicles (EVs) for its last-mile deliveries in a phased manner.
According to the company, the aim is to replace nearly 40 percent of its existing last-mile fleet of delivery vans with EVs by March 2020, starting with nearly 160 EV vans to be deployed across cities by the end of 2019.
In a statement, the company said that the announcement comes as a part of Flipkart’s sustainability commitment, as it aims to reinvigorate efforts towards building technologies for solving crucial environment and civic issues.
As a part of this initiaitve, Flipkart also plans to work closely with the various manufacturers in this field to get the right designs suitable for e-commerce deliveries.
On the initiative, Kalyan Krishnamurthy, Group CEO, Flipkart, stated,
“As a committed corporate citizen, we at Flipkart understand our responsibility regarding environment and running our business in a more sustainable way. Our vision is to replace a significant portion of our last-mile delivery with EVs in the coming years and also contribute towards clean and sustainable mobility. 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. We believe these small but meaningful steps in this direction will go a long way in paving the way for larger adoption of EVs in the country.”
In the last six months, Flipkart has conducted multiple pilots for EV deployment in its supply chain, and witnessed impressive performance results, the company stated. It is also setting up the necessary charging infrastructure at its hubs in order for it to be able to deploy EVs at large scale and ensure their seamless operations.
Amitesh Jha, Senior Vice-President, Ekart and Marketplace, Flipkart, said,
“The induction of EVs across our supply chain is one of the major steps towards sustainability. We see tremendous growth opportunity in electric freight mobility from a greener supply chain perspective, which will play a key role in building a robust supply chain for the future. 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. In this process, we also hope to create an ecosystem for adoption of electric mobility in India.”
The ecommerce giant expects that these efforts will also help in reducing carbon emissions by over 50 percent. At present, Flipkart has already deployed eight EVs in Hyderabad, 10 in New Delhi, and 30 e-bikes in Bengaluru.