Since the last two months, along with letters, Paresh Jadhav, a postman attached with the Pimpri post office, has started delivering parcels from e-commerce company Amazon. Jadhav, who has undergone special training to handle such consignments, said if anything, such parcels had resulted in an increase in his rounds to housing societies. “At a time when there was a dip in the volume of parcels and letters we delivered, such parcels have again increased our rounds, especially to housing societies. It is a welcome change for us,” he said.
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Like Jadhav, many other postmen in Pune have started delivering parcels from Amazon. Senior officials in the Pune GPO said postmen had started delivering parcels from Amazon in the city since the last two months. Figures show in the month of August, the post office delivered 16,952 parcels from Amazon. In September, 16,277 parcels from the e-commerce company were delivered by the post office. The total postage earned by the post office in these months from the e-commerce company was to the tune of Rs 30 lakh. At present, Amazon is the only player in Pune that has tied up with India Post.
At a time when the post office is increasingly facing competition from commercial operators, the last-mile connectivity of the post office is proving to be a big attraction for e-commerce players. Amazon started its pilot run with India Post in south India and now, the company has tied up with the Postal Department to deliver to all the 19,101 serviceable pin codes in the country.
The official spokesperson of Amazon India, speaking about the tie-up, said the footprint and network of India Post was one of the main reason for the company to go in for the tie-up. “It is not about economics but about the accessibility provided by India Post. The Postal Department, with its outreach, allows penetration to the company other players may not have,” the spokesperson said.
While Amazon has been one of the first movers in tying up with the Postal Department, other e-commerce players too are catching up. Pankaj Ukey, director, Seller service and category of eBay India, said they had tied up with the Postal Department for a pilot with select sellers in Mumbai and Delhi. “As part of this pilot, over the last two months, we are witnessing volumes in the range of 3-4 per cent from these cities,” he said.