DPD announces winner of £100,000 tech incubator

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 After an exhaustive six-month process, parcel delivery company DPD has announced the winner of its groundbreaking technology incubator scheme, Last Mile Labs.

London-based Pie Mapping secured the £100,000 (US$154,000) first prize with a unique line-haul optimization and management system that will deliver a significant competitive advantage and efficiency savings for DPD.

Launched in December 2014, in association with tech investment fund L Marks, the aim of Last Mile Labs was to find and work with start-ups and tech entrepreneurs that could help harness technology to navigate some of the difficulties inherent in the express parcel sector.

After reviewing all the applications, three shortlisted teams were selected to receive £12,500 (US$19,200) in seed investment, full access to DPD data sets and APIs, dedicated office space in central London, and first class mentoring from a network of entrepreneurs to help develop their ideas.

At the end of the process, Pie Mapping was chosen by DPD as the outright winner and its solution selected to move forward into full development, integration and rollout.

When fully developed, the bespoke system will enable DPD’s line-haul managers and planners to have total fleet, driver and route visibility in real time, giving DPD a rapid-response advantage when it comes to overcoming issues such as motorway congestion.

DPD’s CEO Dwain McDonald said, “DPD has transformed the last mile of delivery with developments such as Predict and Follow My Parcel, which are ground breaking and truly world class delivery systems. The aim now is to do the same thing for our line-haul operation. While there are traffic management systems available, we want to take it to another level.

“If we can achieve the same level of transformation and efficiency improvements we’ve achieved with our other tech investments, there will be enormous benefits for both us and our customers.

“Investing in technology is critical to us. We don’t just think of ourselves as a delivery company, increasingly we are a ‘technology company that delivers parcels’. Last Mile Labs has been another way that we have invested in the science of delivery, and worked with some of the most innovative people in the technology sector.”

In other news, DPD won five awards at the 2015 Motor Transport Awards, held at Grosvenor House in London on July 1. It is the first time any company has won five awards in one night in the 30 years that the ceremony has been running.

DPD won the Business Excellence Award, the Customer Care Award, the Technical Excellence Award, Home Delivery Operator of the Year and Best Use of Technology.

July 9th, 2015

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Helen has worked for UKi Media & Events for nearly a decade. She joined the company as assistant editor on Passenger Terminal World and since progressed to become editor of five publications, covering everything from aviation, logistics and e-commerce to meteorology. She has a love for travel and property and has redeveloped three houses in three years. When she’s not editing magazines, she’s running around after her two boys and their partner in crime, Pete the pug.

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