An Oxford based cargo bike delivery company is crowdfunding its expansion to Reading.

Pedal & Post, a low emissions courier company, has launched a share offer and plans to raise up to £500,000 through a crowdfunding campaign on the investment platform Ethex.

The company works with delivery companies such as DPD, Yodel and Riverford to deliver their small packages on bikes.

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Back in January, Pedal & Post announced they were starting a new trial with Wolfson College, where they delivered students’ small packages.

The company also delivers medical equipment and supplies to the John Radcliffe Hospital.

New research from the Just Economics report for London has found the NHS and other government services would save £4 billion if delivery companies switched to using cargo bikes for the first and last mile of deliveries.

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In Oxford, it has been calculated that the equivalent saving for taxpayers would be £14 million.

CEO of Pedal and Post Chris Benton said: “The potential to clean up our air and grow the UK economy is huge.

“Pollution from diesel van deliveries costs the NHS nearly £25,000 across the lifetime of the van, compared to around £150 for an electric cargo bike.

“We also know that cargo bikes can deliver more parcels per hour than the average van, and produce 92 per cent less greenhouse gas emissions per delivery, so it really is a no brainer to make the switch.”

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Pedal & Post delivers 1,000 parcels a day across Oxford and employs 23 people but wants to see the number of parcels delivered rise to 8,000 a day.

The company’s planned expansion includes the aim of increasing revenues to £5.5 million and creating 140 jobs.

Recent research by the Department for Transport has also found that 33 per cent of “all urban deliveries could be done by cargo bikes or ecargo bikes”.

The potential market for cargo bike deliveries is estimated to be worth around £13.9 billion in the UK and the deliveries market grew by 50 per cent during Covid.

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Some of the UK’s largest cities currently have no cycle courier services, including Birmingham, Manchester and Sheffield.

Pedal & Post plans to expand to Reading next year and grow in Oxford.

Chair of Pedal and Post Jamie Hartzell said: “The potential market here is huge.

“We know that internet retail sales grew by 47 per cent in 2020.

“But while getting goods delivered to your home at a click of a button is easy and time saving at a time when we are all under pressure, it comes at a significant cost to our health and the environment.

“Electric cargo bikes are a crucial part of the solution to speed up deliveries and make our air safer to breathe.”