Gas stations will host packages for deliverySK Energy and GS Caltex will team up to use their gas station infrastructure to deliver packages more efficiently, the companies announced Wednesday.
Since April, the two oil refiners have been discussing how to use their existing assets more efficiently, in line with the growth of the sharing economy.
Both companies have a nationwide network of gas stations. They first agreed to use the idle space at each station as logistics hub sfor parcel delivery services from other companies. The service, which the refiners are dubbing Homepick, will allow them to use excess space at stations to store packages for door-to-door deliveries.
As the refiners themselves do not have a logistics network, they are cooperating with logistics start-ups that will pick up the packages at homes and take them to SK or GS gas stations. CJ Logistics will deliver the parcels to the recipients.
“Despite the growing demand for customer-to-customer delivery, service providers were struggling to offer fast delivery services, mainly due to the lack of logistics hubs to store goods,” a spokesperson from GS Caltex said.
“Gas stations’ favorable locations, especially in crowded and pricey city areas, are a great advantage to logistics companies,” added a spokesperson from CJ Logistics.
Customers using Homepick can register their orders through Naver, KakaoTalk or the CJ Logistics app, and logistics start-ups will pick up the parcels within an hour, according to SK and GS.
A pilot version of the service limited to Seoul will begin this month, and the nationwide rollout is scheduled for September.
SK Energy and GS Caltex are currently offering equal numbers of gas stations. The two energy companies are willing to open up all their gas stations if Homepick is a success.
According to SK Energy, using idle space for Homepick will improve the profitability of each gas station, which used to only offer gas and car cleaning services. The two refiners are looking into other new business models that could better exploit both of their assets. SK Group affiliates, including SK Energy, have been actively looking for ideas to share their business infrastructure. SK Group Chairman Chey Tae-won last year began putting an emphasis on creating social value by sharing corporate assets with society.
BY KIM JEE-HEE [firstname.lastname@example.org]