Dubai-based logistics company Aramex has signed over 1,000 Saudi nationals onto Aramex Fleet, its crowd-based delivery platform in the kingdom, according to chief operating officer Iyad Kamel.
The programme – launched in December 2018 – aims to offer Saudi nationals employment opportunities in flexible last mile delivery work.
“Whenever there is a spike in business, instead of recruiting new people and having them on standby, we have a crowdsource model,” Kamel explained.
“People come and subscribe to the model online, put their licence, ID and all the paperwork required, come into classroom training at Aramex and go with a courier on a route.
“From there, they are on standby to start delivering packages. Whenever there is a peak, they notify them.”
Kamel added that the drivers, many of whom specialise in particular routes and geographies, are compensated on a delivery basis.
Additionally, Kamel said the firm is working to expand its network of pick-up points in the kingdom. Currently, Aramex has 150 pick-up points in the kingdom.
“In the next two years, that will, at a minimum, double,” he said. “They don’t have to be Aramex pick-up points. They can be retail pick-up points. The idea is not necessarily to set up an Aramex point where we have to rent a space, but to also partner with third parties and they can become our pick-up points in strategic areas.”
As an example, Kamel pointed to Aramex’s partnership with Saudi-based Al-Dawaa Medical Services Co. (DMSCO), owner of Al-Dawaa Pharmacies, that saw Aramex launch service centers in 20 branches of Al-Dawaa Pharmacies across Saudi Arabia.
A second phase will see it expand to hundreds of branches within the company’s pharmaceutical network.
“The idea is, with the growth of e-commerce, to be creative on the last mile,” Kamel added. “The customer wants convenience.”
In 2018, Aramex’s net profit increased by 13 percent to AED 492.6 million ($134.11 million), while full-year revenue increased by 8 percent to AED 5.086 billion ($1.38 billion).