Zipline secures more US partners

Over the last few years, we have come to know Zipline as a drone logistics company that made its name delivering medical supplies, first in Africa; then back at its home base in the US.

But the company has been seeking new markets outside medical deliveries, and its client base has since expanded from just healthcare to restaurant and retail, where it will be making instant deliveries of food and small packages to customers across the US.

In this vein, the drone logistics services provider has signed up partnership deals with three more organisations – health and wellness company GNC in Salt Lake City; Pagliacci Pizzain Seattle; and Associated Couriersin New York – which will be using Zipline’s recently launched home delivery platform, simply called Platform 2.

Zipline’s noiseless Platform 2 Zips fly more than 300 feet above the ground and upon arrival at their destination, will hover at that altitude, releasing a fully autonomous delivery droid down a tether. The droid steers to the correct location on the ground (such as a patio table or the front steps of a home), and gently drops off its package.

The Platform 2 technology also enables customers to use the service as both a hub and spoke model that can deliver in a 10-mile service radius, or as a network in which Zips can travel up to 24 miles each way from dock to dock, and expand a business’ reach. 

“Zipline’s instant delivery solution is faster, more convenient and better for the environment than traditional automotive delivery,” said Irene Scher, Senior Vice President of U.S. Go-To-Market at Zipline.

“We provide the best delivery experience on earth for consumers and businesses of any size, industry and location. We’re excited to go above and beyond for GNC, Pagliacci Pizza and Associated Couriers’ customers.”

GNCis partnering with Zipline to deliver wellness products directly to people’s homes in Salt Lake City, Utah. According to Zipline, GNC’s Utah stores will be the first to offer Zipline delivery later this year using Zipline’s Platform 1 long-range delivery system which has completed more than 600,000 customer deliveries on three continents.

GNC plans to deploy Platform 2 in additional parts of the country next year.

“We are focused on building, testing, and fortifying innovation solutions that enable our business to support our consumers on their path to achieve their goals,” said Alan Chester, Chief Supply Chain Officer, GNC. “This partnership with Zipline will enable GNC to quickly and efficiently deliver our incredible products to consumers to help them stick to wellness routines and Live Well.”

Zipline’s Platform 2 range of drones have come at a great time for Seattle-based Pagliacci Pizza,which will begin using Zipline’s home delivery service to bring pizzas, salads, drinks and more to customers into people’s homes, particularly during the busiest lunch and dinner rushes.

The two partners have already worked out together to design a new custom-made pizza box which lets each droid fit two 13-inch Pagliacci pizzas as well as side dishes, and deliver them to customers throughout the greater Seattle area.

“Over a decade ago, we committed to sustainability by taking bold steps to reduce our carbon footprint, including purchasing green power, buying locally, and developing robust composting programs,” said Matt Galvin, co-owner of Pagliacci. “As we work toward carbon neutrality, Zipline’s drones will enable us to scale our deliveries sustainably with up to 97 percent fewer emissions than cars.”

Meanwhile, New York-based life science logistics provider Associated Couriers will use the Zips to deliver specialty prescriptions and medications directly to long-term healthcare facilities on Long Island. The company plans to expand the service rapidly throughout its U.S. domestic footprint and eventually expand internationally.

“The partnership with Zipline places us one step closer to our ultimate vision: making life science logistics invisible,” said Matt Silverberg, CEO of Associated Couriers. “For 45 years, we have been the go-to partner for healthcare providers delivering life-saving, critical products, and this partnership helps us to elevate our systems to match the future of personalized care.

“Working with Zipline makes sense because, at the end of the day, it is about the number of lives saved and the number of patient outcomes we can help to improve.”

Aside from these three, other organisations that will be deploying the Platform 2 drone technology would be Sweetgreen, Michigan Medicine, MultiCare Health Systems, Intermountain Health and the Government of Rwanda.

Zipline says it expects to operate more flights annually than most major U.S. airlines by the year 2025.


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