Business in Vancouver: “Sharing economy” delivery service Zipments to open in Vancouver

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A new delivery service launched in Vancouver November 27 aims to “disrupt” retail deliveries and take advantage of the sharing economy.

Zipments.ca will use “lifestyle couriers,” made up of independent courier companies, part-time couriers and people who “have the time to make some extra money,” according to the company.

The service has already signed up Mountain Equipement Co-op and Edible Canada as retail partners, and will be offering deliveries this Friday, when many stores in the Vancouver area will offer a home-grown version of Black Friday sales.

Robert Safrata, the CEO of local courier company Novex, negotiated the rights to bring Zipments.ca to Canada. Zipments Corp. is based in New York.

“We believe that efficient local delivery is critical to a vibrant local economy,” Safrata said in a statement. “By cultivating a sustainable community where we take care of each other and our surroundings through cooperative use of resources, we are working towards building a more cohesive and productive city.”

Other examples of “sharing” services include AirBnB, where residents can list their home or apartment for short-term accommodations, and Uber, an unlicensed taxi service. However, lawmakers in several jurisdictions have questioned whether AirBnB and Uber can offer the same consumer safety protections as regulated businesses.

Safrata hopes to expand Zipments.ca’s territory throughout 2014 and eventually operate Canada-wide.

Read the article on Business in Vancouver.

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