Poland’s two biggest parcel locker players, state-owned Poczta Polska and InPost (part of the American Advent Group), are locked in battle over a market worth 6 billion zloty (1.4 billion euros).
The daily newspaper Rzeczpospolita, reported on September 19 that Poczta Polska would be placing parcel lockers in key transport and logistics hubs (for example railway stations), and that it is in talks with Lotos to place lockers at its petrol stations, as well as at discount supermarket chain Biedronka.
Polish consumers increasingly use parcel lockers for click and collect online shopping. Items are delivered to the lockers – placed in convenient locations – instead of to the home, meaning that consumers do not need to worry about missing a delivery.
At the end of August, Allegro, a Polish online e-commerce platform, announced the launch of its Allegro Smart service, which works in a similar way to Amazon Prime: customers pay an annual subscription of 49 zloty and can have up to 365 deliveries made to 15,000 parcel lockers run by various firms around Poland.
“Deliveries to collection points are 25-40 per cent cheaper than those delivered to your door,” explains Grzegorz Czapski, a member of the Allegro Management team.
“Lockers used to be an alternative,” says Michał Czechowski, the Polish head of SwipBox, which also has parcel lockers at Biedronka stores. “Packages used to be delivered to parcel lockers when the courier could not find someone at home. Now they are the chosen destination of the delivery.”
Poczta Polska currently offers parcel lockers at its own post offices as well as state-owned Orlen petrol stations, Ruch kiosks, Żabka and Freshmarket stores, which gives Poczta Polska a network of over 9,500 outlets. It has plans to increase this by 2000 by the end of the year.
While InPost currently only has 3,800 parcel machines around the country, the company has just received a large investment of 125 million euros from American investment firm KKR. By the end of this year it plans on offering 4,500 locations.
“Such an injection of capital should allow InPost to significantly increase the scale of operations and carve out as much as possible of the domestic parcel market. The additional financing from KKR – with the support of our shareholder, Advent International – is an excellent foundation for the further development of InPost,” Rafał Brzoska, the company’s head, tells Rzeczpospolita.