Automated parcel locker and parcel robot manufacturer Cleveron has applied for a loan of over €30 million from state credit agency KredEx. The money would be used to set up over 20,000 parcel vending machines across Estonia, including in private houses.
Over 500 households in Viljandi County already use such machines, and Cleveron's Viljandi headquarters is designing a new model, which would be able to accommodate a variety of different deliveries.
Cleveron board member Arno Kütt said: "All companies and e-stores can send both groceries and ordinary goods to these facilities, as can various logistics firms and larger and smaller firms."
Of the €30-million loan application, Kütt said: "Since the state came up with a measure during the coronavirus pandemic to offer loans via KredEx if banks were not able to, this is the reason we approached KredEx."
However, most KredEx loans so far have been for firms hit by the effects of the pandemic, including shipping line Tallink, which received €100 million.
The parcel machines open to the public have both cooling and heating facilities where needed; the private versions would have an insulated cabinet which could maintain whatever temperature the delivery, including food and drinks, would require, Kütt said.
While intended for private houses they could also be installed adjacent to apartment buildings, he said, with spaces either purchased or rented. Rentals cost lest than €10 per month, he said.
Cleveron says that once the new system becomes available to around 50,000 households nationwide, over the coming years, it would pique the interest of e-commerce and logistics firms.
Both foreign trade and IT minister Raul Siem (EKRE) and economics affairs minister Taavi Aas (Center) said Wednesday they were unable to comment on the loan application, which is down to the government to decide on.
Founded in 2007, Cleveron produces robotics-based parcel terminals and click-and-collect solutions for retail and logistics sectors.
Editor: Andrew Whyte