In times like these, technology often ends up being the glue that holds everything together. Enter the bright minds like Neil du Preez, founder of Mellowcabs – an innovative Stellenbosch based start-up that has seen demand for it’s electric delivery vehicles skyrocket in recent months.
A burgeoning market
This young company that began life at Stellenbosch University’s Launchlab has recently taken big strides in its plans to change the face of transport in South Africa. Mellowcabs electric Tuk Tuks made their debut in Cape Town at the end of 2018, after a successful pilot run.
Before the pandemic, the convergence of technology, CO2 regulations and the continued growth in e-commerce volume had already started to transform the last mile delivery landscape. Now, with the COVID-19 pandemic putting great strain on supply chains and last-mile delivery, many retailers and consumer businesses are being pushed into home delivery, even those who weren’t necessarily serving that space before.
The future is electric
According to Neil, this trend is unlikely to slow down any time soon as “electrification enables logistics players to continue operating in dense urban areas where polluting vehicles will increasingly be banned or considered outmoded. Whereas e-commerce penetration reached 9% of retail sales in the USA and 16% in the UK in 2017, it is expected by KPMG that further growth will result in 30 billion individual deliveries by 2030 and up to 90 billion by 2040.”
Hitting the ground running
Despite an unprecedented and rapid escalation in scale, Neil is confident they are up to the task of growing into the large potential of their young business:
“The need for Industrialization support for Mellowcabs, as we scale up production was already identified several months ago, and we started engaging with several automotive industry experts at that time. We’re now concentrating on a few key projects in our assembly line which will, in turn, ensure that we build quality vehicles that meets international standards and are able to keep up with demand”
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