A world-first shopping centre drone delivery service is revolutionising last-mile delivery for businesses in Logan, Queensland.

Wing, Australia’s first on-demand residential drone delivery service, is partnering with leading Australian retail property group, Vicinity Centres, to pilot a new model of delivery, flying goods from retail shopping centre rooftops, directly to homes and businesses.

Wing and Vicinity Centres have been piloting the drone delivery service, since mid-August, delivering goods on-demand from a range of businesses located at the centre directly to consumers.

In the first six weeks of service, Wing made more than 2,500 contactless drone deliveries from Grand Plaza to customers in parts of the Logan suburbs of Regents Park, Heritage Park, Park Ridge, Browns Plains, Marsden, Crestmead, and Berrinba. The service will soon expand to more customers and offer delivery from other businesses located at the centre.

Last-mile delivery is one of the costliest segments of the supply chain, accounting for 15 to 20 per cent of the total cost of retail transactions in the form of delivery fees or the time spent by consumers picking up their goods.

It’s estimated that by 2030, if drones could deliver between four to six per cent of household purchases, it could grow retail sales in Australia by $2.2 billion.

Jesse Suskin, Head of Policy & Community Affairs, Australia, Wing, said this is the first time Wing has co-located drones with businesses at their premises.

“With the increase in consumers’ desire for convenience and speed, on-demand drone delivery can help address the costly last-mile delivery challenge, reduce road congestion and emissions, and create new economic opportunities for businesses by utilising their existing retail space as logistics hubs and fulfillment centres.

“We look forward to continuing to work with the team at Vicinity Centres to further develop new delivery models that can complement the retail businesses located at Grand Plaza, and if successful, potentially roll out similar models in other locations across Vicinity Centres’ retail property portfolio.”

Vicinity’s Chief Innovation and Information Officer, Justin Mills, said the Wing drone delivery pilot helped retailers unlock the value of their physical store to optimise omnichannel retail.

“Almost two thirds of Australia’s population live within 30 minutes of one of our 61 strategically located centres. This national footprint provides a strong foundation to implement our distribution and fulfilment strategy by rapidly scaling our drone delivery partnership with Wing and further developing our co-located logistics hubs and micro fulfillment centres.

“Exploring new technologies like drone delivery means our retailers may provide customers with game-changing product deliveries in minutes rather than days, while also reducing their carbon footprint.”

Wing saw a 500 per cent increase in deliveries worldwide in 2020 over 2019, and deliveries continue to grow at a similar rate in 2021, with more deliveries completed globally in the second quarter of 2021 than in the entire year of 2020.

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