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E-Picking, the automated locker dedicated to the deposit and withdrawal of bulky parcels

Article publié le 15 February 2022 par Pauline CHOSSEC, Director of E-picking

Meeting with Pauline CHOSSEC, Director of E-picking, the start-up created in 2020 which develops an automated locker solution dedicated to parcels >30KG

Who are you? And where does your entrepreneurial spirit come from?

Pauline CHOSSEC, 28 this year, from Brest. I graduated from ESC Brest and EBS Paris in business and international relations. I started my career in Paris as a manager/recruitment consultant, where I developed and managed the real estate and supply chain departments.

In spring 2019, the family-owned group (specialised in the distribution, warehousing, and logistics sectors) was in full development, and shared its evolution with me.

I am fortunate to have a family of entrepreneurs, which has always fuelled my desire to create my own company, and which offered me at that very moment the possibility of adding a new complementary activity to the group.

It was time for me to embark on this adventure.

So, I set off, leaving Paris to return to my roots!

In September 2019, I joined the family structure with the mission of developing an innovative service in the market of automated deposit dedicated to bulky goods.

How was your company born (context, observations, initial objectives, evolution…)?

During 2019, one of the group’s companies, in order to complete its service offer and at the request of its professional customers, was looking for an automated solution allowing the deposit and withdrawal of bulky and cumbersome parcels (to accommodate the equivalent of 2 Europe pallets).

After conducting a sourcing study, we did not find any players on the European market and therefore decided to create our own product in 2020 to meet this need.

At the same time, retailers and transporters asked us to test our solution, which allowed us to validate the technology and the market.

This was the beginning of E-Picking.

Who are your customers? And what is the need you are meeting?

Our customers are initially private companies: logisticians, manufacturers, and retailers.

For them, the short-term objective is to increase the distribution networks of relay points and to distribute the number of points of passage in order to optimise the costs linked to the last kilometre.

It should be noted that last-mile delivery accounts for 30% of urban congestion, 25% of greenhouse gas emissions and can account for up to 50% of total logistics costs.

Today, for the delivery of parcels >30Kg there are several issues:

  • No known sustainable solution: To date, there is no profitable solution for end-users that would allow for the long-term development of a network of relay points for parcels >30 kg.
  • Constraints linked to demand: The more voluminous the products, the greater the constraints (hire of a van, need for technical assistance, handling, etc.)
  • The turnover of relay points: The lifespan of a relay point is approximately 6 months. The operators are not paid for the time spent and the resources used.

Our solution reduces the costs linked to operations and the last mile.

They can thus offer a differentiating service, making their product accessible 24/7, while maintaining a high level of security (our lockers are designed to accommodate high unit value products) and customer satisfaction (customers are autonomous and no longer have time constraints).

And since 2021, we have also been working with local authorities. We are a signatory of the sustainable urban logistics charter of Rennes Métropole, where E-Picking is strategically involved in relieving congestion in city centres by offering a solution that enables flows to be shared at the beginning and end of the chain.

How can your solution improve the existing supply chain?

Our solution meets the needs of both logisticians and principals:

  • For logisticians:

Our solution allows to increase the number of shared deliveries accessible 24/7.

On a round, the carrier drops off 8 parcels in one go, and the average delivery time is currently 3 minutes/package VS 10 minutes for home delivery.

In this sense, the carriers are integrating a global ecological approach: reduction of the carbon impact of last mile delivery and a CSR involvement.

Economically, E-Picking reduces the number of “no shows” and eliminates the costs of re-delivery and backlogs, thus reducing restocking costs and after-sales service costs.

  • For principals: Our consignments enable them to optimise their rounds and reduce the costs linked to the last kilometre (the most expensive and most challenging today given the constraints in urban areas).

They present an innovative delivery service: Increased customer conversion rate and customer satisfaction.

A consumer who is satisfied with his buying experience is a consumer who will recommend after a positive delivery experience.

They meet expectations on delivery terms and conditions and offer a differentiating service.

Users and customers have 24/7 access to their order and product in a secure location.

And on the “security and traceability” aspect: the access codes are unique and ephemeral and allow real-time traceability of each participant.

Where are you today in the development of your company? And what is your action plan?

To go over the stages, 2020 was the year of validation of the concept for us, followed in 2021 by the commercial development phase with distributors and transporters, and since 2022, we have had our first orders to set up our sites nationwide.

Our vision: to become the market leader in XXL automated lockers

The regulation on the management of waste furniture elements (WFE) has reached a new level since 1 January 2022. Since its creation in 2012, any natural or legal person who manufactures, imports or places on the market furniture components (WEEE) must ensure the management of the waste from these products. Since 1 January 2022, the minimum recycling rate has been increased to 50% as part of the objectives set.

As a supply chain professional, how are you going to transform this constraint into an opportunity?

We know the problems linked to the last kilometre (the costliest), and today we have the constraints linked to the first kilometre for reverse logistics and the circular economy.

It is gymnastics to be carried out from now on from the customer’s purchase path to anticipate the application of the take-back (one for one) or (one for zero) which implies a perfect management of the rounds and flows.

On the financial side, distributors, manufacturers, and delivery companies are looking for solutions to consolidate flows with different players and delivery service providers.

And it will be important to quickly identify the possibilities of integrating recovery zones in their physical shop, and to study the additional costs linked to operations (handling assistance, site security, etc.) but also those linked to the M² (precious in tense areas).

The interest of E-Picking is linked to the control of time (24-hour accessibility), cost (vs. LAD, last km/first km, no show, etc.), so-called “buffer” storage, and security (traceability).

E-Picking is THE solution for logisticians who mutualise flows “at the end and beginning of the chain” and bring the consumer or an external service provider to the delivery point. The solution is accessible 24 hours a day and is located at strategic points.

And today we also offer our services to companies that are looking to implement solutions for AED issues.


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