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Jumia and Zipline launch Africa’s first commercial drone delivery service in Ghana

Africa’s e-commerce leader Jumia has launched the continent’s first commercial drone delivery service in Ghana through a new partnership with Zipline. 

The pilot program and testing were launched a few months ago in the country and officially went live last week. 

The collaboration will integrate Zipline’s automated, on-demand delivery system with Jumia’s existing distribution network to enable customers to receive instant, on-demand delivery of exactly the products they want, exactly when they want them and from the comfort of their homes. 

“Using the latest instant logistics technology will allow Jumia to offer our consumers on-demand delivery of the products they need – instantly. Whether they’re ordering electronics, fashion, health, and beauty, or other categories, Zipline’s instant logistics system will provide fast and convenient access. This will support Jumia’s commitment to sustainability and innovation and provide much-needed access to rural and remote areas where conventional delivery services have challenges”. said Apoorva Kumar, EVP Jumia, Group COO.

An initial pilot was carried out across multiple use cases with varying product assortment logging up to 2,500km in testing. Deliveries to outlying Jumia hubs as far as 85km from the take-off location at the Zipline operational hub in Omenako (Ghana) were completed in less than 1h with real time visibility of the drone for all stakeholders in the delivery cycle. Eventual plans call for expansion to Cote d’Ivoire and Nigeria, and ultimately to other countries in the future.

“Zipline is pleased to partner with Jumia to use instant logistics to improve the lives of customers across Africa. This collaboration will increase access to goods for customers and help small and medium-sized businesses grow. Zipline’s safe and efficient instant logistics system will make shopping on Jumia even more convenient, sustainable and accessible for its customers”, said Daniel Marfo, SVP – Zipline Africa

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Jumia’s logistics network includes 30+ warehouses and 3,000+ drop-off stations and pick-up stations, located across Jumia’s 11-country market. In 2020, Jumia announced that its logistics service would now be available to third parties seeking to leverage the network, technology, and expertise for last-mile deliveries across its 11 countries in Africa.

Zipline’s instant logistics system, on the other hand, is made up of a world-class autonomy platform, fleet of light, electric aircraft, and flight management systems that reduce green-house gas emissions by 98% compared to delivery by car. This system is designed to enable all consumers, from the most urban to the most remote, to access the products they need in 45-minutes or less while reducing the carbon emissions of last-mile delivery up to 98% compared to traditional cars. 

Jumia’s partnership with Zipline is part of its commitment to providing affordable and eco-friendly delivery of online orders for consumers. In addition to its partnership with Zipline, Jumia works with Solar Taxi in Ghana and eBee in Kenya to achieve a fully green footprint using clean and sustainable renewable energy.

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