If you’ve ever missed a delivery, cycled along a road only to come face-to-face with a delivery van, or despaired at the air quality in your city - then you may already know why delivery services desperately need a revamp.
Or... you might not.
When we first came across a startup in the delivery space, truth be told we were not excited. We thought the delivery market was too crowded. But when we met the founders everything changed. Mathias and Murvah are the kind of founders that won’t stop for anything, and their energy and fresh eyes on the market made us dive deeper into the question of how to fix the transportation of goods. We realised how their people-first philosophy beats the incumbent's package-first one, and how the system needed to change.
We are proud today to announce our investment in HIVED - a startup solving the problems in the current delivery systems and building a delivery service from the ground up. They’re making delivery more efficient (read: more affordable), and they’re creating a better delivery system for everyone: through reliable employment for delivery workers and a 100% emission free deliveries. All while building the best possible delivery experience, end-to-end.
Retail has changed - why hasn’t delivery?
Like it or not, online shopping has been on the rise. We know UK online shopping surged during the Covid-19 pandemic, climbing 46.1% in 2020 alone, but it has also been increasing steadily since 2007 and shows no signs of slowing down. Lots of people, 85.9% of shoppers in fact, plan to continue or increase their online shopping in the future. We need delivery services that don’t add to the problem. This means zero emissions.
Right now, we are far from this reality of zero emission transport. 96% of the 650,000 plus delivery and collection vans in the UK are powered by diesel fuel, which has been linked to around 29,000 (but potentially as high as 40,000) air-pollution related deaths every year. Put simply, people are literally dying just so we can get our shopping when we want it.
There are, however, many new delivery modes developing - like cargo bicycles. Cargo bicycles have been shown to emit 90% less carbon than diesel vans and 33% less than electric ones. Outside of just operational emissions, cargo bikes also cost significantly less carbon to manufacture than vans (280 kg CO₂ per bike versus 7,500 CO₂ per van).
To have an impact, the customer must come first
Transportation is a sector that gets a lot of attention when planning the shift to a zero emissions future, but it’s also an area where price and efficiency comes first. If we want to move towards a zero emissions future (and fast) the solutions will need to be both better for the planet and better for people. HIVED knows this. Whilst incumbent services are built around packages, HIVED’s approach is uniquely designed around people. They’ve built a service from the ground up that takes all stakeholders into account: the customer, the delivery person, as well as people who live in the city. By being vertically integrated they give better customer service as well as price. They also provide more predictable work for the drivers - employing drivers instead of using self-employed contractors.
The future for HIVED
We were super happy when we met HIVED through our diversity open office hours call. They are two driven founders with strong execution skills who want to tackle this issue with a fresh new approach. Based in London, Murvah Iqbal and Mathias Krieger have boundless energy, optimism and a deep understanding of the challenges and opportunities in the delivery space.
We invested in HIVED alongside EKA Ventures and joined by superb angels including the founders of Tier and Budbee. HIVED now has an ambitious roadmap of new features to improve the delivery experience, and we see them scaling rapidly within e-commerce in the UK and further into Europe to become the default delivery provider for retail and e-commerce brands: from SMEs to household names.
If you’re a retail or e-commerce brand looking to compete on delivery experience check them out here.
They’re also hiring! Check out their roles here.