Brunei’s first parcel delivery app ONZ targets fulfillment centre and online marketplace

Brunei’s first parcel delivery mobile application ONZ is targeting to operate their own warehouse fulfillment centre and online marketplace by the end of the year that will provide storage for businesses and shorten delivery times.

ONZ currently has over 180 drivers or “runners” across Brunei’s four districts who are deployed on a 10 kilometre (km) radius closest to the site of pick up, with a delivery fee of $4 for the first 15km, with each subsequent km costing 10 cents.

ONZ founder Azri Jumat said a fulfillment centre would enable ONZ to more efficiently store and sort packages from businesses to be delivered to customers who order through ONZ’s upcoming online marketplace, a similar model that e-commerce giant Amazon employs.

“The newer version of ONZ will not just be parcel delivery, but an e-commerce platform with our logistics solution,” he said. “We are targeting to onboard 200 merchants (businesses) for us to begin operating the fulfillment centre.”

At present, ONZ has close to 4,000 registered users and operates solely by picking up items from the sender’s appointed location and delivering them straight to the customer or destination.

Their relatively large runner pool and commitment to transport “anything that fits in a car” has seen their service recently gain popularity, peaking at over 800 deliveries across three days with a promotion in conjunction with Brunei’s National Day.

The majority of these deliveries were placed by businesses – primarily food and beverage – for orders to be delivered to customers and shops. Businesses also use the application to pick up items needed for daily operations.

“We acknowledge that parcel delivery by runners is not new or unique; there are many individuals and and small businesses operating runner services in Brunei, however we are the first fully integrated within a mobile app,” said Azri at ONZ’s open day at iCentre last month.

Azri added that while Brunei also saw a surge in uptake to food delivery-based mobile applications at the height of the COVID-19 outbreak in March last year, the parcel delivery space remains open for ONZ to capitalize.

ONZ has no commission or transaction fees for businesses or individuals using the application. Its drivers keep 80% of the delivery fee, while ONZ takes the remainder.

Businesses have two options using ONZ: they can utilize the mobile application to pick up or send items, similar how individuals or the public would do so; or they can sign onto a merchant package for $100 a year, which would entitle them to a 5% discount of delivery fees and provide access to a centralized dashboard that would enable them to schedule deliveries in large volumes.

ONZ founder Azri launched the mobile app last November. ONZ was previously known as Rotuku Express, which focused primarily on cross-border delivery prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Only those sending and arranging for parcel deliveries need to have the ONZ application, those receiving parcels do not; they will instead receive a computer-generated text by ONZ. Both sender and receiver can also track the live movement of their delivery.

Runners can use their existing driver’s license and road tax (vehicle insurance), with ONZ supporting with additional occupational insurance. ONZ has also secured auto care deals for its runners – including car washes and tyres for their work vehicles.

Payment is currently made to ONZ’s drivers by the originator of the order in cash. ONZ also covers insurance for up to $500 for each delivery.

Azri added that ONZ is also partnering with other e-commerce businesses looking for a delivery solution.

“We have recently partnered with (Pasar Pelbagai Barangan Gadong’s online website); so whenever an order is made (for food) on their website it will trigger an order for our runners to fulfill,” he said.