Your Amazon packages, which usually show up in a UPS truck, an unmarked vehicle or in the hands of a mail carrier, may soon be delivered from an Amazon van.
The new scheme could come in handy for those who felt uncomfortable on many counts with the existing Amazon Flex program where some of the Uber drivers were recruited to make the last mile deliveries and it posed many bottlenecks for them. Amazon did not provide details about the incentives, nor did it explain whether it would pay for business per trip, per mile or per month. Right now, FedEx, UPS and the U.S. Postal Service handle their deliveries, but Amazon says in a few years those services won't be able to keep up with the company's demand.
Drivers will be full-time workers instead of contractors, and Amazon will require business owners to give them paid time off and other benefits.
Amazon is constantly looking for hands-on leaders who think big and deliver results for our customers.
Clark said he expects the companies to join the program with 20 to 40 trucks will employ about 100 drivers.
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Amazon is also offering qualifying military veterans $10,000 in reimbursements to get their own delivery business started.
"I had prior experience running my own business but not in logistics", said Olaoluwa Abimbola, one of Amazon's beta participants in the new offering.
Amazon has negotiated discounts for approved entrepreneurs, including lower rates on insurance, fuel and leases for Amazon branded vans that have been customized inside for package delivery. As we evaluated how to support our growth, we went back to our roots to share the opportunity with small-and-medium-sized businesses. The contractor will be responsible for hiring delivery people, and Amazon would be the customer, paying the business to pick up packages from its 75 US delivery centers and dropping them off at shoppers' doorsteps.
Amazon set up a website, Logistics.Amazon.com, where entrepreneurs can apply for the program. However, an Amazon SVP told CNBC that this new program shouldn't damage the company's relationship with core providers.
Amazon plans to bring on board hundreds of these new small businesses over the next year, according to Clark.