Zipline Press Kit

About us

Zipline was founded to create the first logistics system that serves all humans equally. We design, manufacture and operate the world’s largest instant logistics and delivery system that is used by businesses, governments and consumers. Zipline is transforming the way goods move, from powering Rwanda’s national blood delivery network and Ghana’s COVID-19 vaccine distribution, to providing on-demand home delivery for e-commerce, to enabling healthcare providers to bring care directly to U.S. homes. The technology is complex, and includes autonomous, electric drones, but the idea is simple: a teleportation service that delivers what you need, when you need it. By transitioning to clean, electric, instant logistics, we can decarbonize delivery, decrease road congestion, and reduce fossil fuel consumption and air pollution, while providing equitable access for billions of people.

Zipline’s system conducts instant deliveries on three continents (North America, Africa and Asia) and in five countries - Rwanda, Ghana, the U.S., Nigeria, Japan, with Kenya and Côte D’Ivoire coming soon. Zipline has made more than 400,000 deliveries of more than 3.5 million items, and flown more than 25 million miles. Globally, Zipline completes a delivery every two minutes, and each day the company flies more than double the distance of the equator.

Zipline drones can deliver items within a 50-mile radius, and fly up to 60 miles per hour in high winds, rain and extreme temperatures. Each flight produces about 30 times less CO2 emissions per mile than an average electric vehicle and up to 98% less CO2 emissions than a combustion engine vehicle, according to company estimates. 

Our aircraft are what people see, but they are only a small percentage of what we do. Behind each delivery is a complex network of inventory management and fulfillment software, warehousing, data and performance management, cold chain storage, and more. Zipline’s instant logistics system is a trusted partner for businesses, governments and consumers, and currently supports the medical, health and retail sectors, delivering blood, vaccines, COVID supplies, prescriptions, e-commerce items, products that support human and animal health, and food.

Our Impact

Three scientific studies published in 2022 highlight the health impact of Zipline’s service. The first, published in The Lancet, showed that Zipline’s service resulted in a 67% reduction in blood wastage across Rwanda, contributing to greater access to this life-saving product. The second, which was funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, found that Zipline is increasing health access and equity across the health system in several ways, including:

  • A Zipline-served facility is 42% less likely to report missed opportunities for vaccination  due to a stockout than a non-Zipline facilities;
  • Vaccine stockouts are 60% shorter at Zipline-served facilities than non-Zipline facilities;
  • Zipline-served facilities stock 10% more medical products than non-Zipline facilities; and
  • 92% of facility heads reported that Zipline’s services are very convenient.

A third study, published by researchers at Wharton, found “evidence of improved blood inventory management and improved health outcomes as a result of drone delivery” provided by Zipline. Specifically the report found: 

  • A reduction in Rwanda of in-hospital maternal deaths due to postpartum hemorrhage of 88% as a result of Zipline’s logistics and delivery system. The report states: “ a back of the envelope calculation that considers the number of deliveries per year and the annual incidence of PPH in maternal mortality implies that approximately 43 to 157 deaths are averted per year among Rwandan mothers.” 
  • Transfusing facilities decreased on-hand inventory by 62% and reduced the number of units destroyed or damaged by 42% which “points to more effective and efficient utilization of blood products.” 

For an overview of what we do, check out this video and more about how it works can be found here.

Safety

Safety is our top priority, and our solution safely serves millions of people each day on three continents. Each part of our system and aircraft is designed with safety in mind. Preflight inspections, redundant systems, and real-time monitoring by our operations team provide three layers of redundancy that enhance the safety of our flights and service.

Each part of the aircraft is examined before each flight, and once we assemble the aircraft it automatically performs 500 different tests internally as well. Zipline’s flight critical systems operate with redundancy. Every Zip has two propellers, two GPS navigation systems and two pairs of critical operating systems for power and communication; if one motor, GPS or communications system were to go out, the backup would activate automatically. Although Zips fly autonomously, our professional aviation teams closely track and monitor each flight through our custom-developed monitoring system. Weather and air traffic are also monitored by our trained aviation professionals to ensure safety of the flight.

As an ultimate fail-safe, in the unlikely event that one of our drones needs to land quickly, perhaps because of a sudden weather event, we’ve built a unique, additional layer of protection: our Parachute Landing System that enables Zips to land anywhere safely. If our operators, or the computers onboard a Zip, determine the best course of action is to remove the drone from the airspace, a whole-aircraft parachute is deployed, which allows the drone to land gently and safely. The unique build design of our aircrafts minimizes damage to anything on the ground. More about our safety systems can be found here.

Fast Facts

  • Each aircraft has a 50 mile (80km) service range and can fly a 100 miles roundtrip.
  • Each aircraft can fly at 60 miles per hour, including in high winds, rain and extreme temperatures.
  • Our Distribution Centers (which we call Nests) provide more than 2,000 total health care facilities with instant access to medical deliveries.
  • Every two minutes, someone's life is made better by a Zipline delivery.