Amazon introduced it bought 11 used Boeing 767-300 jets from Delta and WestJet, a primary for the e-commerce big. The corporate has been steadily increase its air cargo capability through the years by way of leasing agreements, however that is the primary time Amazon has ever owned its personal plane.

The deal comes as airplane costs have dropped as a result of coronavirus pandemic. Airways have been dashing to shrink their fleets as passenger demand plummets amid lockdown orders throughout the globe. The purchases embody seven plane from Delta and 4 plane from WestJet, which is able to be a part of Amazon’s community by 2022, the corporate says.

“Our goal is to continue delivering for customers across the U.S. in the way that they expect from Amazon, and purchasing our own aircraft is a natural next step toward that goal,” mentioned Sarah Rhoads, vice chairman of Amazon International Air, said in a press release. “Having a mix of both leased and owned aircraft in our growing fleet allows us to better manage our operations, which in turn helps us to keep pace in meeting our customer promises.”

Amazon launched its air fleet in 2016, below the idea that by 2022 it’s going to have greater than 85 planes, each leased and owned. According to a year-old analysis, Amazon delivers greater than half of all of its packages within the US because it accelerates its push to personal all the logistics chain and finish its relationship with corporations like FedEx and UPS.

The newly purchased planes are supposed to assist pace the supply of packages bought by way of Amazon, which has seen file demand because of the pandemic. The corporate says it’s going to proceed to depend on third-party carriers to function these new plane.

Amazon is shortly turning into a significant participant on the earth of transportation. Clearly, as one of many largest supply and logistics companies in historical past, Amazon was all the time destined to play an enormous function in the way in which individuals and issues transfer throughout the globe. However a few of the firm’s newer offers counsel Jeff Bezos’ firm has ambitions that stretch past simply package deal supply.

Amazon recently acquired the self-driving automotive startup Zoox, which simply unveiled its omnidirectional prototype robotaxi. The corporate has additionally participated in a number of funding rounds for electrical car firm Rivian, which is designing a battery-powered van for the supply big’s last-mile deliveries, and contributed to driverless automotive and truck startup Aurora’s $530 million funding spherical. (Aurora simply acquired Uber’s self-driving automotive division.)

And naturally there’s the corporate’s curiosity in drone supply. The corporate was lately given approval by the Federal Aviation Administration to function as a drone airline within the US, paving the way in which for it to begin providing industrial deliveries on a trial foundation. The FAA mentioned that the ruling permits Amazon to “safely and efficiently deliver packages to customers” and let its drones carry packages exterior of the operator’s visible line of sight.

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