10,000 sustainable parcel lockers are to eliminate cardboard and plastic

Thousands of parcel lockers are only the first step in SwipBox’s search for sustainable logistics solutions. The big revolution is a packaging product that returns itself.

 

A pair of shoes sent from East Asia in a cardboard box filled with bubble wrap. An electronic product wrapped in many layers of packaging to withstand shipping. E-commerce has surged dramatically in developed countries over the past years. Unfortunately, the same goes for the use of packaging. If the world is not to suffocate in plastics and cardboard, we have to rethink our logistics systems completely, SwipBox CEO, Allan Kaczmarek says:

‘The e-commerce revolution has not gone unnoticed, transforming the entire retail and logistics sector over the past few years. In Denmark alone, e-commerce is expected to pass DKK 150 billion when the numbers for 2019 are announced. As a parcel locker supplier, we find ourselves in the eye of the storm. We have the means to develop a whole new logistics system for private parcels and thereby move society towards a new, greener era.’

Even if SwipBox already delivers thousands of parcel lockers to both domestic and world markets, their ambitions are way higher, Allan Kaczmarek explains:

‘In fact, I would say that the parcel locker revolution has only just begun. In the future, we will see a much more extensive network than before. In rural areas, we plan to install parcel lockers in all small villages, in the provinces they’ll be present in all residential areas, and in the bigger cities there will be one in every local neighbourhood. For the consumer, this means that you can simply take your bike or even walk down to the nearest parcel locker to pick up your orders. For the distributors, the system enables you to optimize transport and cut down your carbon footprint substantially, preferably with fleets of electric cars.’

Over the next few years, a staggering 10,000 parcel lockers will be installed all over Denmark. SwipBox has worked hard to enhance sustainability in all phases of this upcoming process, says Allan Kaczmarek:

‘Incredibly, it takes only seven minutes for our technicians to set up a locker system because we can do it completely without the use of machines. Since all lockers are powered by battery, there is no need for a fixed installation – and all materials are recyclable if the lockers are taken down. As a result, there isn’t a single place in the world where our parcel lockers would not function. Be it industrialised countries or emerging economies, we have integrated sustainability everywhere!’

According to Allan Kaczmarek, SwipBox is engaged in open dialogues with many different partners:

‘Being present in 62 countries, we are part of an open system that is driven by a spirit of cooperation. Our parcel lockers can be used by everyone, from the global distributor to the local farm shop. SwipBox is for anyone who wants to be part of the movement. Together, we can make miracles happen.’

As the new sustainable parcel lockers are already in production, Allan Kaczmarek and the SwipBox team have used the SDG Accelerator programme to address the next big challenge: packaging. The ambition is to develop a solution where consumers receive their orders in reusable, chip-labelled boxes. Once they have collected their goods, they put the box back into the locker, after which it automatically is returned to the sender or the next company needing it. Nothing less than a logistical revolution, according to Allan Kaczmarek:

‘The need to replace disposable packaging with reusable, sustainable options has become obvious.

We now possess the technology to do so, which will have a huge impact on the logistics of the future. In a few years, carelessly throwing away packaging like we do now will be out of the question, instead it must be looped back into circulation. In the SDG Accelerator programme, we have looked at the sustainability and commercial models of this kind of infrastructure.’

With the all-new solution, Allan Kaczmarek is proud to be part of a green logistics revolution:

‘The idea of sending tonnes of packaging straight to the bin is simply outdated. The future of package delivery will be efficient, sustainable and convenient for consumers. For me, it will be a pleasure to bring us all there.’

 

Sustainable Development Goals at play

  • SDG 11: Sustainable cities and communities
  • Target 11.3: By 2030, enhance inclusive and sustainable urbanization and capacity for participatory, integrated and sustainable human settlement planning and management in all countries.

This is how SwipBox contributes to the Sustainable Development Goals

  • In the near future, SwipBox will install 10,000 sustainable parcel lockers in Denmark. Other countries will follow after that.
  • At the same time, the company is working to develop a reusable packaging product, which is returned automatically to the sender.

Facts about SwipBox

  • Founded in 2012
  • Has installed more than 1,500 parcel lockers in 62 countries
  • Head office in Sønderborg, Denmark
  • Approximately 90 employees

SwipBox is part of UNDP's SDG Accelerator for SMEs