On-demand residential drone delivery service, Wing, is partnering with retail property group, Vicinity Centres, to pilot a new model of delivery, flying goods from retail shopping centre rooftops directly to homes and businesses in South East Queensland.
Since mid-August, Wing and Vicinity Centres have been piloting the drone delivery service, said to be the first-of-its-kind in the world, from the rooftop of Grand Plaza in Logan, Queensland, delivering goods on-demand from a range of businesses located at the centre directly to consumers.
Participating businesses include food and beverage outlets, Sushi Hub, Boost Juice, and Chatime. From today (7 October), local community pharmacy TerryWhite Chemmart will also commence offering drone delivery of over-the-counter pharmaceuticals, personal care, general health, and beauty products.
In the first six weeks of service, Wing says it made more than 2500 contactless drone deliveries from Grand Plaza to customers in parts of the Logan suburbs of Regents Park, Heritage Park, Park Ridge, Browns Plains, Marsden, Crestmead, and Berrinba. The service will soon expand to more customers and offer delivery from other businesses located at the centre.
Convenience and speed
Wing Australia Head of Policy & Community Affairs Jesse Suskin says the company is delighted to explore this new model of delivery with Vicinity Centres.
“For the first time, we are co-locating our drones with businesses at their premises, rather than local businesses having to co-locate their goods with us at our delivery facility,” he says.
“With the increase in consumers’ desire for convenience and speed, on-demand drone delivery can help address the costly last-mile delivery challenge, reduce road congestion and emissions, and create new economic opportunities for businesses by utilising their existing retail space as logistics hubs and fulfillment centres.
“We look forward to continuing to work with the team at Vicinity Centres to further develop new delivery models that can complement the retail businesses located at Grand Plaza, and if successful, potentially roll out similar models in other locations across Vicinity Centres’ retail property portfolio.”
Optimising omnichannel retail
Vicinity Chief Innovation and Information Officer Justin Mills says the Wing drone delivery pilot helped retailers unlock the value of their physical store to optimise omnichannel retail.
“The retail industry is changing, and Vicinity is employing a test and learn approach in areas critical to the role of Australian shopping centres in the future. We believe the partnership with Wing will be an important component of our overall distribution and fulfillment strategy and support our new growth strategy,” he says.
“Almost two thirds of Australia’s population live within 30 minutes of one of our 61 strategically located centres. This national footprint provides a strong foundation to implement our distribution and fulfilment strategy by rapidly scaling our drone delivery partnership with Wing and further developing our co-located logistics hubs and micro fulfillment centres.
“Exploring new technologies like drone delivery means our retailers may provide customers with game-changing product deliveries in minutes rather than days, while also reducing their carbon footprint.
“Our partnership with Wing is a natural extension of our distribution and fulfilment strategy which will help retailers use physical stores and our shopping centre network to get their products in customer hands quicker and more efficiently.”