Australia Post has unveiled its plans to trial several new electric delivery vehicles capable of carrying up to 100 small parcels and 1,200 letters at a time. The e-vehicle is planned for introduction across major cities from early next year.
Plans for the e-vehicle trial follow Australia Post’s A$41m (US$31m) before-tax profit this year, nearly a A$400m (US$304m) turnaround when compared to the previous year, driven largely by strong growth in the parcels business and reduced losses in letters.
Ahmed Fahour, managing director and group CEO, said, “Last year, parcels generated over half of our total revenue. 10 years ago parcels contributed less than 25% of our revenue.
“As our business transforms, so too are the jobs that our workforce is doing. A few years ago we equipped our posties so they can deliver small parcels and this latest initiative will allow them to deliver even more helping to ensure their roles remain meaningful well into the future.
“Since the full acquisition of [transport and logistics provider] StarTrack, we have been working to integrate and optimize our parcels capability to build Australia’s leading e-commerce and logistics business. We recognize that we need to evolve to meet the changing needs of our customers as the structural decline in letter volumes continues.
“While letter volumes have nearly halved, Australia Post is looking at ways to keep our posties delivering for Australians. We’re also trialling other jobs our posties might be able to do on their daily rounds including welfare checks and meter reading as a way to keep the much-loved postie around for years to come.”
Electric delivery vehicles are already used in New Zealand, Germany and Switzerland, with international postal authorities seeing benefits including greater carrying capacity, improved rider safety and lower vehicle emissions.
Australia Post plans to trial the new e-vehicle in capital cities next year, beginning in select locations, with a decision on a broader roll-out expected by mid-late 2017.
October 10, 2016