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In Brazil, a favela start-up delivers parcels where others fear to tread -Breaking


© Reuters. Favela Brasil Express member carries bags containing products that will be delivered to Paraisopolis, Sao Paulo (Brazil), October 22, 2021. REUTERS/Leonaro Benassatto


By Leonardo Benassatto

SAO PAULO, (Reuters) – This maze of narrow streets and precariously stacked cinderblock homes has been a problem for Brazilian ecommerce delivery firms. It was deemed dangerous and impassable.

Paraisopolis was a community of just 100,000 residents in central Sao Paulo that saw internet sales boom during the pandemic. However, their postcodes were often rejected by online shoppers when they tried to check out.

Givanildo Pereira Bastos (21), a resident, said “They blocked that region, considering it a dangery area.” In an interview for Reuters Next.

Pereira created Favela Brasil Xpress to fix this problem. It is a delivery company that will go wherever others won’t.

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After arriving at the distribution center, parcels are sorted and transported to their destination. Sometimes they have to navigate narrow streets by bicycle or tuk-tuk. Sometimes deliveries may need to be made on foot.

Favela Brasil Xpress, a community-based company with 90 employees, has Paraisopolis. Over half a dozen informal communities (known as favelas) are operated by the company in Brazil. They can be found in states like Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo, and Minas Gerais. Pereira plans to grow.

Pereira stated that “we had no idea” how many favela residents e-shop. In Paraisopolis there is an average of 800 deliveries per day.

However, it isn’t always simple to find addresses even for Pereira.

He said that even though I was having some difficulties in getting deliveries, he remembered a problem in finding the house of a man who had been waiting for four months to get a card payment device. It arrived after the business of the man had shut down.

Pereira believes that his company will contribute to reducing inequality in this area.

“We do not want two Brazils.” “…We want to live and work in the one Brazil where every favela resident enjoys all of the rights that someone living in an area with wealth.”

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