Wing offers shopping center drone deliveries in its biggest Aussie market

Wing drone deliveries

Google’s drone delivery cousin company, Wing, is announcing a new service flying orders from stores in a major shopping center in the Queensland city of Logan – its largest market in the world thus far. The innovative mall-based offer comes a month after Wing dubbed Logan “the drone delivery capital of the world” after the company passed its 100,000th order milestone there. 

Until now, Wing’s operations in Australia, Finland, and the US have relied on the same model of transporting goods from individual partnering businesses to clients. Now it’s making a nod toward the one-stop-shopping logic by offering drone deliveries of orders from shops in Logan’s Grand Plaza mall. Wing began operating what it calls the first-of-its-kind service from the roof of the shopping center in mid-August on a trial basis. Today it is extending that with a formal launch.

As part of that expansion, Wing says in addition to the food and beverage businesses that participated in the pilot phase, it is also partnering with a Grand Plaza drug store providing over-the-counter pharmaceuticals, personal care, general health, and beauty products via drone delivery. The mall-based operation is transporting orders to seven Logan-area suburbs, and Wing says it plans to enlarge both destinations and Grand Plaza retailers involved in the near future.

“We’re delighted to explore this new model of delivery,” says Wing’s head of policy and community affairs, Australia, Jesse Suskin. “For the first time, we are co-locating our drones with businesses at their premises, rather than local businesses having to co-locate their goods with us at our delivery facility… 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 utilizing their existing retail space as logistics hubs and fulfillment centers.”

Wing introduces one-stop-shopping logic to its Logan drone deliveries

Meanwhile, the company will continue developing its previous drone delivery service to a total of 19 Logan suburbs, whose combined population is 110,000.

The area is a hot spot of Wing activity, and a natural choice for launching the new shopping center-based service. Rolled out in 2019, its Logan business has continued increasing over time, with fully 50,000 of its 100,000 total deliveries reached in August having been placed in the first eight months of 2021 alone.

Wing also operates drone deliveries to suburbs of Canberra, which – apart from the rare disturbance by overly defensive ravens during nesting season – have also been steadily increasing. Additional expansion of activity to Australian shopping centers could fuel even faster growth.

According to mall operator and Wing’s Grand Plaza partner, Vicinity Centres, nearly two-thirds of Australia’s population live within 30 minutes of one of its 61 malls across the nation. If the new service catches on, that arrangement could be a magnifier of one-stop-shopping orders, and drone deliveries to waiting customers.

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