The micromobility industry has welcomed Amazon’s plans to double the number of European cities where it has ‘micromobility hubs’.
Amazon currently has micromobility hubs in more than 20 cities across Europe, including London, Munich and Paris, and expects to double that figure by the end of 2025.
These smaller, centrally-located delivery stations enable deliveries via e-cargo bike and on-foot to bring packages to customers more sustainably.
The traditional last mile logistics set up has been for drivers to take large vans full of packages into city centres, and negotiate endless traffic, parking challenges and high fuel costs.
Speaking about Amazon’s move, Rob King, Zedify’s CEO and Co-Founder, told Zag Daily: “Zedify have been utilising microhubs for cargo bike deliveries for many years and it’s hugely exciting to see some of the biggest names in logistics endorsing this model.
“Urban deliveries need to be done better and it is change at this scale that’s going to meet those multiple challenges head on – whether that’s efficiency on cost, cutting emissions or meeting consumer demands.”
The hubs are part of a wider investment by Amazon of more than €1 billion (£880m) over the next five years to further electrify and decarbonise its transportation network across Europe. The online retailer said it would invest £300m in the UK.
Beryl’s CEO Philip Ellis told Zag: “For last mile deliveries or short journeys, the bikes are by far the best and offer the most time efficient way to move large or heavy items, so hopefully Amazon’s expansion will raise their profile even further as a fundamental transport necessity.”
Amazon’s first UK micromobility hub opened in July this year in Hackney east-London. Along with an existing fleet of electric vehicles, this hub alone will contribute to 5m deliveries a year.
The bikes are operated by a variety of partner businesses, not directly by Amazon. One approved bike supplier is EAV Solutions.
“EAV is supporting the adoption of innovative new micromobility based logistics by enabling the change away from legacy operation practices with its ecosystem of urban specific transport solutions,” said Adam Barmby, CEO and Founder of EAV.
Zag also spoke with Charlie Ford, a Cargo Bike Fleet Consultant from Bristol, to get his take on the expansion. “Amazon has learnt from working with cargo bike logistics carriers to develop the micromobility hub concept and mastered an operational playbook, which now works commercially,” he said.
“The impact on the cargo bike logistics industry will be huge. This new investment shows the wider industry that the micromobility hub concept is viable and will mean lots of other carriers will be scrambling to try and replicate this model to support their last-mile.”