By Chris Welsch
Aitor Ojanguren is the founder of Koiki, which employs disabled people to deliver packages in dense European cities. At first the coronavirus crisis caused him to close 80% of his centres. But half of them have reopened, and the demand is overwhelming.
“We are fortunate because e-commerce is booming across Spain, and I guess the rest of the world, so there is a great need for deliveries,” says Aitor, who lives in Madrid. “In the centres that are open, we have a 100% increase in demand, and we’re having a hard time keeping up with our customers’ needs.”
The company’s Koiki Network, with 110 employees in 16 cities in Spain, had been growing rapidly before the pandemic struck. “We had 100% growth in 2019, and expected at least that this year,” he says.
An investment by Repsol Impacto Social, a foundation run by the Spanish oil company, helped the company grow faster, and there are plans to expand to Portugal. Repsol has committed to the goals of the Paris climate agreement and the transition to clean energy. One of Koiki’s founding principles is reducing traffic and pollution by delivering packages on foot and by bicycle.
Koiki is a past winner of the EIB Institute’s Social Innovation Tournament, which supports entrepreneurs who are making an impact on social, ethical or environmental issues.