GoBolt is expanding its suite of services to start offering same-day, last-mile delivery service — starting with a fleet of 70 electric vans — for small packages in cities across Canada and the U.S.
Large cargo moving service, GoBolt, is getting into the small parcel space by expanding its services to include zero-emission, last-mile delivery.
The move started earlier this year when GoBolt acquired BoxKnight — a Montreal-based same- and next-day parcel delivery company — to expand GoBolt’s fleet and service operations out of its nearly 20 warehouses across North America.
“We’ve been on a 30+ month journey to develop partnerships, capabilities, and a scalable strategy around our EV fleet,” says GoBolt CEO Mark Ang in an email to Electric Autonomy Canada.
“Our drive toward EVs has changed the way we think about our real estate portfolio and the manufacturers we partner with. We want to continue working with companies that share our culture of innovation and disruption.”
One of the unique features of GoBolt’s activities in the logistics industry is its nimble approach to adopting new technologies and expanding its services.
“Logistics is a massive industry and the term “logistics” means different things to different people,” says Ang. “For GoBolt, I’d like to see us continue to develop technology and services that manage the entire port-to-porch experience for our merchants and their customers.”
But it’s not just about meeting the demands of customers that expect near-instant delivery. In addition to streamlining a shipment value chain, GoBolt is promising to do so under some of the corporate world’s most aggressive environmental targets to date: to be carbon negative by the end of 2023.
To meet that timeline, adopting EVs quickly was essential and the learning curve has been a straight line pointing up and it hasn’t always been smooth.
“EVs are nowhere close to being the same as their ICE counterparts. The considerations around routing, fleet management, recharging, and reliability are totally different,” says Ang.
“[W]e’ve had to develop contingency plans in the event we encounter a power outage or other severe event that hinders our ability to operate EVs. Put simply, it’s not a matter of driving an EV off the lot and that’s it.”
GoBolt is launching its small package delivery service with just over 70 electric delivery vans. That fleet size is expected to grow to over 185 electric vans within 12 months and be supported by nearly 200 Level 2 chargers.
And as the fleet grows, so too will the troubleshooting of the various issues that arise including making adjustments to duty cycles and delivery routes to maximize efficiency.
“We’ve developed our ops clock to run routes throughout the day and charge overnight. This enables us to leverage Level 2 chargers which are more than sufficient to charge our vehicles in a 6-8 hour window,” says Ang.
“ICE trucks can easily be refueled at random and be a 5-minute pit stop, whereas EV trucks need a 6+ hour pit stop to recharge. This dramatically impacts routing flexibility, which is why we’ve developed software to manage this for us more scalably.”
And for those routes that can’t be run completely on zero-emission vehicles, GoBolt has a strategy to offset emissions.
“We are committed to making our deliveries with an electric vehicle but where we can’t yet, we’ve partnered with EcoCart to offset carbon emissions,” Ang said in a press release.
“We continue to evaluate additional partnerships that align well with our brand values and DNA.”