Editor's Comment

Editorial: Why big names are investing in new ideas around delivery

Interesting news has come from the autonomous delivery vehicle world this week as the future of retail delivery continues to develop.

Starship Technologies has announced new seed funding and the appointment of a new CEO. What’s particularly exciting however is the strength of names of those getting involved in the company as it continues to rollout and test its vehicles in a number of delivery situations.

Its new CEO comes from Airbnb and he has brought along former colleagues and peers too – including Airbnb’s co-founder who has signed up as an investor. Robots developed by the company have now covered more than 100,000 miles and encountered more than 15 million people along the way the company claims.

As it seeks to improve the experience of products coming back the other way returns specialist ReBOUND has announced that it has appointed Vicky Brock, founder of Clear Returns, to its senior leadership team.

Two retailers have talked about their logistics and delivery strategies this week as part of their year end results. Fashion retailer Quiz has said the success of its state of the art distribution centre has provided the base for its to grow revenues profitably and revealed how it has expanded its space in use at the centre this year.

Meanwhile electricals retailer AO has revealed how it has increased the number of branded vehicles on the roads delivering its larger products and seen strong growth for its premium installation and delivery business.

Finally we have two opinion piece this week. The first, from Hitwise, looks at the subscription box industry and why more brands should be looking at its potential. The second comes from Gary Tervit, international director at P2P, who looks at how retailers selling down under will be impacted by new import tax laws that will come into effect in Australia next month.