At CES, BrightDrop announces Walmart as a new electric vehicle customer and expands its partnership with FedEx.
BrightDrop is off to a solid start in 2022, only one year after its inception, with considerable EV bookings.
BrightDrop, the technology firm that is decarbonizing last-mile delivery, revealed at CES 2022 that it is expanding its collaboration with FedEx and adding Walmart to its increasing list of customers. Walmart has agreed to reserve 5,000 of BrightDrop’s EV600 and EV410 electric delivery vans to assist the retailer’s expanding last-mile delivery network and goal of operating a zero-emission logistics fleet by 2040.
FedEx and BrightDrop have agreed to prioritize the development of 2,000 electric delivery vans over the next three years. FedEx’s initial reservation of 500 BrightDrop EVs, announced last year, will be supplemented by this agreement. FedEx is also working on a plan to add up to 20,000 more jobs in the coming years, subject to further talks and the signing of a definitive purchase agreement. Beginning in 2022, FedEx aims to expand its testing of BrightDrop’s EP1 electrified container to ten regions.
Both moves demonstrate growing momentum for BrightDrop’s electric delivery solutions, with two major Fortune 500 companies announcing their intent to adopt BrightDrop’s electric delivery vans as part of their 2040 sustainability goals. BrightDrop President and CEO Travis Katz and GM Chair and CEO Mary Barra were joined virtually during the CES 2022 keynote by Walmart CEO Doug McMillon and FedEx Express Regional President of the Americas and EVP Richard Smith, to make the announcement. BrightDrop publicly launched as a business at CES 2021 and the company’s first EV600 electric light commercial vehicles were delivered to FedEx last month. The EV600, built on GM’s Ultium Platform, was conceived in just 20 months prior to initial deliveries to FedEx, making it the fastest vehicle to market in GM’s history.
“BrightDrop’s mission is to decarbonize the world’s deliveries. We leverage the best of two worlds — the innovation, agility, and focus of a technology start-up with the engineering and manufacturing might of General Motors,” said Katz. “This combination, coupled with BrightDrop’s holistic solution set, gives us powerful advantages that uniquely position us to support the world’s largest delivery companies, like Walmart and FedEx, with their robust sustainability goals. Today’s commitments showcase our ability to power the electrification journey of some of the world’s biggest companies.”
“As important as it is that we save our customers time and money through convenient delivery options, it’s just as important that we focus on creating a more sustainable last mile delivery fleet that avoids emissions,” said Tom Ward, senior vice president of last mile, Walmart U.S. “BrightDrop’s proven ability to bring a sustainable electric van to market makes them a great partner to support our growing InHome delivery service, and we look forward to continue driving our goal of operating a 100 percent zero-emissions logistics fleet by 2040.”
Walmart intends to employ BrightDrop electric vehicles as part of its InHome delivery service, which the store revealed today will be rapidly expanding, with InHome now serving 6 million households in the United States and expected to reach 30 million by the end of the year. Walmart’s InHome delivery service, which began in 2019, is aimed to give time back to families by delivering fresh food and everyday goods right into the customer’s kitchen or garage refrigerator. To achieve the retailer’s objective of operating a 100 percent zero-emissions logistics fleet by 2040, InHome will hire over 3,000 associate delivery drivers this year. They will be equipped with an all-electric fleet of delivery vehicles.
As early as 2023, BrightDrop’s electric vans might be on the road making Walmart deliveries. Walmart also plans to use electric vans to make deliveries to third-party shops and brands in a secure and low-emissions manner. Walmart’s white-labeled delivery as a service company, GoLocal, debuted earlier this year.
“FedEx remains full speed ahead in taking the next steps to electrify our pickup and delivery vehicle fleet, which is a critical component in our ambitious goal to achieve carbon-neutral operations globally by 2040,” said Smith. “With the collaboration and innovative technology of companies like GM and BrightDrop, we will continue to meet the world’s increasing transportation needs in more environmentally sustainable ways for our customers, shareholders and communities.”
FedEx has set a goal to electrify its entire parcel pickup and delivery fleet as part of its global objective to achieve carbon-neutral operations by 2040. FedEx plans to install hundreds of thousands more medium electric delivery trucks over the next two decades to achieve this aim.
BrightDrop today announced the conclusion of a second test with FedEx in New York City, following a Toronto-based experiment reported in January 2021 that witnessed a 25% increase in package deliveries per day when using BrightDrop’s EP1 electric container. When used on routes in a high-density, vertical urban environment, the integration of BrightDrop’s EP1 allowed FedEx Express couriers to increase package deliveries by 15% per hour, remove one on-road vehicle from the delivery route, and cut delivery vehicle curbside dwell time in half – all while reducing physical strain on couriers. Beginning in 2022, FedEx wants to expand EP1 testing to ten new markets.
The BrightDrop EV600 is currently in production and the new EV410 will be available in late 2023. For more information and to watch the GM CES keynote, please visit https://www.gm.com/exhibitzero.