It started with a simple idea. Deutsche Post, one of the largest global delivery companies, wanted a fleet of electric trucks to lower its carbon foot print. It approached several traditional manufacturers, including Volkswagen, but was rebuffed. So the Deutsche Post board decided to design and build their own using a new subsidiary known as StreetScooter. A factory to build the electric trucks was set up in Aachen, Germany.
To date, it has produced 6,000 vehicles, all of which are being used by Deutsche Post as part of its delivery fleet, mostly in urban areas. But a funny thing happened along the way. Other companies heard about the electric vans and asked if they could buy some. The demand was so strong, the company has now opened a second factory in Düren. Like the first factory, the new facility will have an annual capacity of 10,000 vehicles.
According to a company press release, Armin Laschet, the Minister President of the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia, told an audience during the opening ceremonies for the new factory, “The StreetScooter is already an unprecedented success story. The fact that Deutsche Post deploys more than 6,000 StreetScooters throughout Germany clearly demonstrates that electro-mobility is, in several areas, already a perfectly viable, everyday transport solution. It is success stories such as these that can make North Rhine-Westphalia a key driver of growth in electro-mobility. StreetScooter in Düren will create up to 250 new jobs here in the Rhine region. This is structural change in action, and it opens up new opportunities for the people of the region.”
Jürgen Gerdes, a member of Deutsche Post’s board of directors added, “E-mobility is on the move. We can see it in growing public interest and increasing third party customer demand for our StreetScooters. The number of StreetScooters used in the business world, in municipalities, and at Deutsche Post is also on the rise in Germany and abroad, and the reason is the same in both arenas — pollution and more pollution in major cities everywhere. That’s why we’re delighted to be able to start production in Düren.”
StreetScooter is building a variety of electric trucks to meet the needs of various customers. Vans come in small, medium, and large sizes. Flat bed bodies are available, some with tilting mechanisms. Refrigerated cargo boxes are on offer as well. Organizations that are interested in customized electric vans include municipalities, craft shops, energy suppliers, waste disposal companies, airports, facility management enterprises, and catering companies. “What sets StreetScooter apart in particular is the ability to produce affordable, customized electric vehicles for our customers from a variety of industries and countries,” says Achim Kampker, CEO of StreetScooter.
Gerdes tells NASDAQ.com he foresees the possibility that the company may be spun off as a publicly traded entity with its own IPO. “It’s theoretically possible. We’re looking at the next two to three years,” he says.
Hat tip to CleanTechnica reader heinbloed.