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Kouzelna Almara, or “Magic Box”, is a parcel-delivery service which rolled out in the Prague just a few weeks ago. The service allows users to have packages delivered to a box of their choosing and to have it remain there for 72 hours. This new service is backed for an undisclosed amount by Miton, Enern, and Czech investor Tomas Cupr. The logistics themselves are provided by Austrian firm KEBA. As of now, there are 15 kiosks, all located in the Prague region.
The service offered is the ability to pick up packages at any time and at a desired location. For a recommended fee of 59 CZK (~2.20 euro), customers can have the parcel delivered and then can come pick them up at any time over the next 3 days. If they fail to retrieve the parcel, Kouzelna Almara will email the customer to offer a reminder. They will try to find another method of delivery or, if that fails, will just set it back to the shop.
Right now, the service is being established in Prague. However, the plan is to expand to different parts of the Czech Republic by the end of 2013. Further, although it isn’t currently possible to send packages from the boxes, the company says that this will be an option in the future.
Cupr founded Slevomat, a group-discount site, in 2010 and has since moved to head Slevomat Ventures. Miton already invests in Slevomat and Enern was a co-founder of Slevomat Ventures, so it’s not a huge surprise that these three parties have teamed up to back this new project.
A similar service QIWI Post has been rolled out in Russia as a joint venture by iTech Capital, QIWI and Polish Integer.pl (owner of a Polish kiosk service InPost). We have also learned that InPost set up a joint venture in Czech Republic with IN TIME, a B2B courier and plans to install 150 machines, 70 of which are already in operations.
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