DHL Parcel and Smart today announced a joint pilot in which owners of Smart cars can use their vehicles as mobile addresses for car drops starting in autumn. The project partners have worked in recent months to develop and test a solution to ensure high security standards for merchandise and vehicles.
An expanded market test will be conducted in the German town of Stuttgart in autumn this year. The car drop service will be offered a few months later in Bonn, Berlin and Cologne. By attracting several hundred participants in each city, partners DHL Parcel and Smart aim to collect feedback under near-reality conditions. Smart owners wanting to take part in the pilot can go to www.smart.com/drop for information and submit their applications from September. Installation of the devices needed to participate in the pilot will be performed at local distributors, with Smart assuming the costs. When registering their car for the pilot with Smart, customers can also fill out the necessary DHL car-trunk delivery agreement in just a few simple steps. DHL Parcel’s customer portal www.paket.de has been linked with Smart’s own customer portal to combine the two processes into one.
"As a leader of innovation in the parcel sector, with DHL Parcel we are pursuing the goal of developing new ideas to supplement our diverse range of solutions to make it easier to send and receive a parcel, and to personalize the process to meet customers’ needs," says Jürgen Gerdes, CEO Post - eCommerce - Parcel at Deutsche Post DHL Group. "Having successfully tested car-trunk deliveries as part of a pilot in Germany, we are using the knowledge we have gained to work with Smart to develop a new and attractive service for a young, extremely online savvy target group."
Smart CEO Annette Winkler agrees: "With the new service, we are expanding the ways in which our vehicles can be used to offer a broader mobility model that goes beyond the car itself. The pilot also kicks off our campaign to improve the quality of urban life."
Smartphone based solution
The joint solution from Smart and DHL Paket is smartphone based, with the Smart driver and the DHL parcel courier using specially designed apps. The vehicle owner uses the Smart app to generate a single-use transaction authorization number (TAN) which they enter in the "c/o" box when stating their delivery address for purchases in an online shop. For the car drop to take place, the vehicle simply has to be parked in the vicinity of the owner’s home address.
Source: Deutsche Post DHL