Amazon to Buy 100,000 Electric Delivery Vans

| Mike O'Brien

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos said the company plans to purchase 100,000 electric-powered vans from Detroit startup Rivian Automotive, as it seeks to accomplish two goals in one stroke: Decreasing its carbon footprint and increasing its delivery capabilities.

Omnichannel Merchants Shift Closer to the Customer

| Ken Fleming

As consumer behavior shifts and omnichannel retailing grows, retailers are getting closer to customers to improve service and help ensure profitability. Increasingly, they look to four key areas where shifts can make fulfillment more efficient: Retail footprint; manufacturer direct shipping; 3D print & ship; and pickup sites.

Fast Shipping Will Put Us on Fast Track to Environmental Responsibility

| Guy Bloch

If we’re looking to turn deliveries into a catalyst for environmental change, drones and autonomous vehicles will help, but we’re not quite there yet. In the meantime enterprises should focus on improving delivery efficiency, which means providing drivers with the most efficient routes and the maximum number of packages per run.

Target Expands Curbside Pickup to 1,550 Stores for Back to School

| Mike O'Brien

Target is expanding its free curbside pickup program, Drive Up, ahead of the busy back-to-school season, making it available at 1,550 stores and adding coverage in the Northeast, the company reported in a blog post. Several markets are being added in Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire and Rhode Island, with expansion in others.

CommonSense Robotics Goes Underground with Grocery Fulfillment

| Mike O'Brien

Israeli firm CommonSense Robotics is building what it says is the world’s first underground automated fulfillment operation for grocery delivery, anticipating a future where facilities like this will occupy abandoned urban spaces above and below ground to fulfill one-hour deliveries for city dwellers.

Shopify Launches Fulfillment Network for SMB Merchants

| Mike O'Brien

Shooting across Amazon’s bow with its FBA program, Shopify is going all-in on ecommerce fulfillment, tapping 3PL partners to provide two-day delivery across the U.S. for merchants on its ecommerce platform, many with physical stores, while letting them keep customer data and a branded packaging experience.