Darwyn is all set to stir some more excitement amongst healthcare professionals and mobility enthusiasts this month. Commencing 2021, the Darwyn scooters that have been doing duty for grocery and essential deliveries during lockdown has extended their scope to delivering the vaccine through the toughest part of the journey, its last mile. India has a cold chain problem and one of the biggest questions raised by experts on India’s healthcare system is will we be able to vaccinate those without the best access to healthcare. Their scooter completed testing of 20,000 kilometer with dummy vaccine vials to test for breakage and its ability to maintain storage at the optimum temperature for shipping the vaccine.
Darwyn plans to make the vehicles available in Indian cities like Bangalore, Pune, Lucknow, Goa, Mumbai, Delhi NCR, Ahmedabad, Hyderabad, Bhopal, Amritsar, Chandigarh, Nainital and Nagpur in phase 1 ending April 2021. And in tier-II & tier-III cities by August 2021 followed by the required service in over 24 cities to keep the vehicles running in optimum condition till the vaccination drive ends.
Ever since the vehicle has been seen testing curiosity amongst people seeing it on the road led to a tremendously positive and curious response from onlookers with videos of the vehicle testing going viral online. The vehicles come with ardent reliability and a full metal body reducing the chances of failure and breakage. The vehicle and batteries are Made in India with Darwyn becoming the first Indian startup to achieve 84% localization by number of parts and making a truly Made In India electric vehicle.
Speaking about the announcement, Rahul Gonsalves, founder and chief executive officer, Darwyn, said, “India’s logistics supply chain has been broken and the pandemic has shown proof that the healthcare system is no better, we have been focussed on helping businesses electrify their fleet and in the process our fleet has completed a cumulative 200,000 kilometer on road. We are confident our product will help reduce the time of the immunization drive by 30% and reduce costs by 60-70% for last mile deliveries of the vaccine.”
This Darwyn Scooter can be charged on any wall socket in 45 minutes and has been manufactured keeping in sync robust reliability and utility and has been largely adopted across food delivery, eCommerce, medicine delivery and courier industries. The vehicle is powered by a hub motor and a fast charge capable fully Made In India battery. The company has setup its manufacturing facility in Ahmedabad, Gujarat and has allocated 40% of the capacity to the immunization drive in spite of pressure from commercial clients to scale deliveries.
The team has been facing a lot of questions regarding the investment in the supply chain for the immunization drive, and whether they could afford it. Darwyn has hence partnered with Bamiyan for leasing of these vehicles, Imran Afridi, chief executive officer, Bamiyan, said, “The Anganwadi worker has been the backbone of our medical system and we are pleased to partner with Darwyn to provide these vehicles on lease to them, small and large vaccine centres, national laboratory and medical chains along with various state and national government agencies, they will not have to invest in the infrastructure, we will provide the vehicles to them on a monthly lease basis and they can also opt to own the vehicle at the end of the lease period.”
The company has also partnered with cold chain experts and is further working with new and upcoming cold chain logistics service providers both from the legacy companies as well as startups and will gradually grow its fleet to 6000 scooters working in immunization until Q4 2021.