Bensons for Beds is to start making deliveries with all-electric vehicles as part of its journey to becoming a net zero emissions retailer by 2040.
It will launch a pilot scheme today (10 December) when it will begin using a new e-van to deliver its Rollo by Slumberland mattresses. Over time it plans to phase out all its petrol and diesel vehicles.
The first electric vehicle trial by a UK bed retailer will be offered to customers in London, as well as Kent, Cambridge, Essex and Milton Keynes.
But Bensons customers across the UK can also plug into the move towards a greener economy. There will be a 10 per cent discount off the price of a Rollo mattress for any customer who collects it from their local store in a hybrid or electric car.
Because the Rollo mattress has been designed to be rolled-up ready for delivery or collection, it is ideal as the first Bensons product to be trialled with the new e-van.
Bensons is using the Maxus E Deliver 3 – built by SAIC – with a payload of 905kg and capable of comfortably carrying eight to 10 Rollo mattresses. The van has an average city range of 213 miles on a full charge.
The first e-van will be based at Bensons’ Dagenham distribution centre. If the pilot is successful, Bensons will look to begin rolling out the vehicle across its logistics network and 200-strong fleet.
Six months in the planning, the move comes just four weeks after the government announced plans to end the sale of new petrol and diesel cars in the UK by 2030 as part of its efforts to tackle climate change.
And it follows Bensons commitment to the British Retail Consortium’s (BRC) Climate Action Roadmap in November. Bensons will collaborate with major retailers and the BRC to decarbonise the retail industry by reaching net zero targets by 2040.
Bensons for Beds chief operating officer Joe Wykes said: “This is another landmark on the route to Bensons becoming a net zero retailer. The pilot scheme will let us know how to get the best out of the e-van and deliver great service to our customers.
“While our customers are recharging their batteries on their new Rollo mattress, they can sleep easy knowing that Bensons is making a positive contribution to cutting emissions to help the planet.
“Our ambition is to replace our existing vehicles with an all-electric fleet covering the whole country.”
The trial is the latest innovation from Bensons as it undergoes a transformation following a £25 million refinancing in June that saw it emerge as a standalone company. It has 100 years of expertise in making luxurious beds and mattresses and is home to highly regarded in-house brands such as Slumberland and Staples and holds the prestigious BSI Kitemark for quality.