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Coupang’s Rocket Delivery reaches 1 billion mark in 4 years

Coupang’s Rocket Delivery has surpassed 1 billion deliveries four years after the South Korean e-commerce firm started the end-to-end service, the company said Thursday.

To bring innovation to the e-commerce market, the company has built its own logistics center and hired deliverymen to handle the entire process from product purchase to door-to-door delivery. The speed of the service is key so customers can receive the products they ordered the next day, the company said.

Rocket Delivery is the first direct commerce model in the world, and has played a crucial part in improving the quality of e-commerce delivery services in South Korea, it added.

Customers can have their orders delivered the next day, even on weekends, if they order products marked as eligible for Rocket Delivery and priced more than 19,800 won ($18). The service is available in major cities across the country, including Seoul, Busan, Incheon, Daegu and Gwangju.

To expand its business, Coupang built the largest logistic center in the country in Incheon two years ago and is operating more than 50 logistics networks to keep the business afloat.

The number of rocket deliveries made was around 23 million in the first year the company started the business. But the business grew fast, largely on customers’ satisfaction, it said.

By Sept. 15, the company had delivered 261 million orders so far this year, growing more than 10 times in four years. The company provides about 3.5 million kinds of products available for Rocket Delivery, in comparison to supermarket chains that trade a selection of around 50,000 items, the company added.

Sales of Rocket Delivery items surged from 194.8 billion won in 2014 to 2.45 trillion won, the company said.

To maintain growth and the quality of service, the company plans to hire 1,000 deliverymen. In pursuit of flexible work hours, the company has launched Coupang Flex, a hiring system for part timers. The program allows workers to select the days they wish to work, officials said, adding that it has been drawing attention from stay-at-home moms seeking for part-time jobs.

“Coupang’s Rocket Delivery surpassing the 1 billion mark was possible as the company has a state-of-the-art logistics infrastructure, millions of product selection, price competitiveness and excellent customer service,” said Navid Veiseh, senior vice president of Coupang’s e-commerce.

“We will continue to provide new services to offer the best customer experience.”

Coupang secured $1 billion from SoftBank Corp. in June, 2015, marking the country’s largest-ever internet investment. In 2014, it attracted $100 million from Sequoia Capital and $300 million from Blackrock. Most of its investment were spent for Rocket Delivery for product purchases and expansion of logistics infrastructure, it said.

By Cho Chung-un (
Korea Herald daum