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IKEA’s NYC last-mile delivery fleet to be fully electric by May

NYC, LA operations to operate 90 EVs at full staffing, retailer says

IKEA to go all-electric in NYC last mile (Photo:IKEA)

The U.S. arm of Swedish retailing giant IKEA said Tuesday it plans to fully convert its New York City last-mile delivery fleet to electric vehicles by May and will begin the same process in the Los Angeles market that month when it takes delivery of the first five of an expected 50 EVs.

Once fully staffed, IKEA’s New York operations will operate with 40 EVs, about 65% more electrified capacity than it currently has. In the Los Angeles area, the first trucks will be delivered to Burbank, followed by Covina and Costa Mesa. IKEA U.S. did not provide a timetable for the Los Angeles area to be fully staffed. Nor did it disclose the names of carriers involved in the EV operation.

The new vehicles will be provided by Fluid Truck, an online vehicle rental platform that operates under a truck-sharing business model. Ingka Investments, the investment arm of IKEA parent company Ingka Group, is a minority shareholder in Fluid Truck through an unspecified investment made earlier this month. The New York fleet is currently composed of Lightning eMotors Electric Class 4 commercial box trucks and Workhorse C1000 trucks, IKEA U.S. said.

IKEA U.S. said its goal is for its domestic home-delivery business to operate with zero emissions by 2025.

Like other big retailers, IKEA has tilted heavily toward online sales, with e-commerce revenue up 32% in its 2020 fiscal year, which ended last Aug. 31. As part of the shift, the company has ditched the printed and online versions of its once-ubiquitous catalogue, which began publishing 70 years ago. The massive printed catalogue was once considered a must-have for IKEA customers.

IKEA operates 375 stores in 30 countries, including 52 stores in the U.S.

Mark Solomon

Formerly the Executive Editor at DC Velocity, Mark Solomon joined FreightWaves as Managing Editor of Freight Markets. Solomon began his journalistic career in 1982 at Traffic World magazine, ran his own public relations firm (Media Based Solutions) from 1994 to 2008, and has been at DC Velocity since then. Over the course of his career, Solomon has covered nearly the whole gamut of the transportation and logistics industry, including trucking, railroads, maritime, 3PLs, and regulatory issues. Solomon witnessed and narrated the rise of Amazon and XPO Logistics and the shift of the U.S. Postal Service from a mail-focused service to parcel, as well as the exponential, e-commerce-driven growth of warehouse square footage and omnichannel fulfillment.