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GoBolt launches sustainable small parcel delivery in US, Canada

Tech-driven delivery company expands beyond big and bulky

GoBolt's electric parcel van, pictured, began small parcel deliveries in the U.S. this week (Photo: GoBolt)

Toronto-based supply chain technology company GoBolt on Wednesday announced the launch of a sustainable small parcel delivery service in the U.S. and Canada. The service is powered by the company’s growing fleet of electric vehicles, as well as a partnership to offset carbon emissions through sustainability technology firm EcoCart.

Before Wednesday, GoBolt’s electric last-mile delivery network catered mainly to big and bulky orders — items like couches, exercise bikes and appliances. But after acquiring same-day delivery startup BoxKnight this past June, the stage was set for the company to move into small parcels.

“Expanding our last-mile delivery services to small parcel was the natural next step for GoBolt as we continue to strengthen our first-party logistics network,” said Mark Ang, CEO and co-founder of GoBolt. “This move will allow GoBolt to provide our merchants needing both truck and parcel deliveries with a true end-to-end, holistic logistics solution.”

Read: Canada’s GoBolt expands electric last-mile network to US

Read: Lightning eMotors delivering 170 electric vans and trucks to GoBolt

BoxKnight gave GoBolt existing integrations software that allowed the Canadian firm to accelerate its time to market. Now it has the capability to pick up, consolidate, sort and deliver smaller packages for e-commerce brands using a fleet of 70 electric parcel vans. That number will grow to over 185 within the next 12 months, the company said.

Through its small parcel network, GoBolt will offer same- and next-day shipping, optional contactless delivery and delivery tracking through SMS or a truck tracking app. 

Not every delivery will be made with an EV, though. Luckily, GoBolt has a plan to make those deliveries sustainable as well.

“We are committed to making our deliveries with an electric vehicle but where we can’t yet, we’ve partnered with EcoCart to offset carbon emissions,” said Ang. “We continue to evaluate additional partnerships that align well with our brand values and DNA.”

Watch: Electrifying the last mile

For deliveries made with non-EVs, GoBolt plans to calculate the impact of carbon emissions per trip and donate a proportional amount to carbon projects via EcoCart. Those initiatives revolve around practices like forest management and conservation, composting and fuel-efficient cooking.

GoBolt recently expanded its EV fleet via an ​​agreement with Lightning eMotors that will see the Loveland, Colorado-based EV maker deliver 170 electric vans and trucks over the next 12 months. Some of those vans have already been deployed, while production of the trucks is  underway.

“This partnership is an important development of our growing North American network of zero-emission delivery vehicles and brings GoBolt one step closer to being a carbon-negative business by the end of 2023,” Ang said in a statement accompanying the announcement.

And given the current climate, Ang is making a smart gamble. While shoppers have, do and always will value delivery speed, there’s one thing the modern consumer values more — and that’s sustainability. In fact, a Descartes survey found that consumers actually favored longer delivery times when it was better for the environment.

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Jack Daleo

Jack is a staff writer for FreightWaves and Modern Shipper covering topics like last mile delivery and e-commerce fulfillment. He studied at Northwestern University, majoring in journalism with a certificate in integrated marketing communications. Previously, Jack has written for Backpacker Magazine and enjoys travel, the outdoors, and all things basketball.