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Pitney Bowes to deploy Gatik autonomous trucks on e-commerce routes

Vehicles will operate in Dallas market making multiple stops per day

Pitney Bowes is the second major customer in Texas to deploy Gatik’s Class 6 autonomous trucks. (Photo: Jim Allen/FreightWaves)

Pitney Bowes will begin running autonomous box trucks in its e-commerce logistics network’s Dallas market beginning in the first quarter of 2023.

The global shipping and mailing company made the announcement Wednesday in conjunction with autonomous middle-mile technology provider Gatik, which will supply the vehicles.

Pitney Bowes (NYSE: PBI) will deploy Gatik’s Class 6 autonomous trucks as part of a continuous, operational loop across its e-commerce network. The vehicles will make multiple deliveries per day.

“Our partnership with Pitney Bowes reinforces the intense demand we are seeing for autonomous trucks that can operate within urban and semi-urban environments,” said Gautam Narang, CEO and co-founder of Gatik. “We’re excited to help Pitney Bowes accelerate the transformation of their supply chain by establishing a safe, secure and hyper-responsive autonomous delivery service in the Greater Dallas area.”  

Watch: Gatik CEO Gautam Narang

During initial deployment of the vehicles a safety driver will occupy the front seat to monitor the vehicle and conditions. Data collected during each route will be used to further refine the network design and identify additional opportunities for cost savings and service improvements, the company said.

“Our partnership with Gatik promotes growth and accelerates the modernization and expansion of our network with technology solutions that are redefining e-commerce logistics,” said Stephanie Cannon, senior vice president and head of global platform and network for Pitney Bowes. “Gatik’s flexible and responsive logistics network enables us to tailor our Designed Delivery services to provide shippers with unmatched solutions. Pitney Bowes and Gatik’s innovative strategies align to remove cost and complexity from e-commerce logistics to better serve our clients.”

Pitney Bowes’ Designed Delivery is a direct-to-consumer, e-commerce shipping service for retail businesses. It offers national, regional and international shipping as well as branded tracking. The company is forecasting parcel volume growth of between 5% and 10% annually from 2022 through 2027. Total volumes could reach as much as 40 billion parcels annually by 2027.

Pitney Bowes is the second major customer Gatik has announced it is working with in the Texas region. In June, the company announced a partnership with KBX Logistics to replace 53-foot tractor trailers on a short-haul route with Gatik’s Class 6 Isuzu FTR 26-foot box trucks. Those trucks are hauling product seven days a week from Georgia-Pacific facilities in the area to 34 local Sam’s Club stores

Most current Gatik operations involve safety drivers as the Pitney Bowes operation will, but in northwest Arkansas, Gatik’s vehicles are working fully autonomous on dedicated routes for Walmart (NYSE: WMT). That program sees the Gatik vehicle navigate a 7.1-mile route from a Walmart dark store (one that stocks items for fulfillment but isn’t open to the public) to a Walmart neighborhood market in Bentonville.

Gatik is a member of the AllianceTexas Mobility Innovation Zone, which has brought together companies, including autonomous and drone delivery providers, from various sectors of the supply chain to develop innovative and cost-effective solutions.

Click for more articles by Brian Straight.

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Brian Straight

Brian Straight leads FreightWaves' Modern Shipper brand as Managing Editor. A journalism graduate of the University of Rhode Island, he has covered everything from a presidential election, to professional sports and Little League baseball, and for more than 10 years has covered trucking and logistics. Before joining FreightWaves, he was previously responsible for the editorial quality and production of Fleet Owner magazine and Brian lives in Connecticut with his wife and two kids and spends his time coaching his son’s baseball team, golfing with his daughter, and pursuing his never-ending quest to become a professional bowler. You can reach him at [email protected].