New Delhi: Walmart-owned Flipkart on Thursday said it aims to replace nearly 40 percent of delivery vans of Ekart, its logistics unit, with electric vehicles (EVs) by March next year as part of its sustainability efforts.
The company, which is already running a pilot in Delhi, Bengaluru, and Hyderabad using e-vans and electric bikes, said it intends to have about 160 e-vans in its fleet by the end of the year.
"Over the last few months, we have conducted multiple pilots for EV deployment in our supply chain and have seen impressive results that has prompted us to deploy EVs at scale. These efforts will also help in reducing our carbon emissions by over 50 percent," Amitesh Jha, senior vice-president, Ekart and Marketplace at Flipkart, told PTI.
He added that the company is also setting up the necessary charging infrastructure at its hubs to ensure that it is able to deploy EVs at a large scale and that operations are seamless.
Flipkart has already deployed eight e-vans in Hyderabad and 10 in New Delhi, and 30 e-bikes in Bengaluru, he said.
"Our aim is to replace nearly 40 percent of our existing last mile fleet of delivery vans with EVs by March 2020, starting with nearly 160 e-vans to be deployed across cities by the end of 2019," Jha said.
He, however, declined to comment on investment details related to the initiative.
Jha said the company is also working closely with various manufacturers to help them co-design concepts for electric vehicles that are best suited for e-commerce deliveries.
"We are the first e-commerce platform in India to introduce electric mobility for deliveries at scale. 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," he added.
The government has been promoting EVs in India and plans high penetration of such vehicles by 2030.
The Delhi government on Wednesday announced its first electric vehicles freight pilot under which up to 1,000 such vehicles are aimed to be deployed in the city over the next 12 months for delivering online orders.
The partners for the project include Flipkart's rival Amazon as well players like Grofers, Zomato, Blue Dart Express, Hero Electric, BSES, Tata Power, among others.
Updated Date: Jun 28, 2019 10:42:26 IST