Customer case

Swapfiets repair service? Now also available in Barneveld

The iconic Swapfiets bicycles with their blue front tires are becoming increasingly familiar on streets across the Netherlands. For a fixed monthly fee, a Swapfiets mobility contract guarantees you access to a good bike that works properly. Electric or classic – whatever you like. If repairs are needed, your bike will be fixed within 48 hours – but often much faster. Pon Logistics in Barneveld receives, stores and issues the bikes, and since recently, also repairs them. André van den Breemer, head of the Logistics department, explains: “We have no contact with the end user. We deliver bikes to SWAP’s depots, and if they run out of space they send ‘brokens’ back to us.”
Swapfiets started out as a start-up by three friends, which became a rapid success. All current and former students are aware of the perils of a broken or stolen bike, which is often the preferred mode of transport to get from one side of town to the other. Swapfiets guarantees that a good bike that works properly will always be available. And it’s not just students who use the swapfiets nowadays: over 62,000 bikes were delivered over the past year alone.

warehousing bulk

Growing together

Pon Logistics is responsible for receiving, storing and issuing the bikes to SWAP depots. It is convenient for Swapfiets to outsource the storage and distribution of both the bike and parts with one professional party, where Swapfiets also benefits from the existing agreements with transporters. Pon Logistics and Swapfiets have had a working relationship for a number of years, but their collaboration has recently expanded. André: “It started at the unloading site in Leusden, then the whole operation moved to Veenendaal and now everything happens here in Barneveld.”

Repaired and ready for use

Over the past year, more than 60,000 bikes were delivered under Andre’s watchful eye. Each bike undergoes a maintenance check before it leaves the premises. “We check the bike’s key safety features, lubricate the chain and things like that. It basically means getting the bike ready for use.” André says that broken bikes also find their way back to Barneveld. “At the beginning of 2022, we started setting up part of the warehouse so that we could offer a repair service. The broken bicycles arrive from the various Swapfiets branches and we make sure they can go back on the road as high-quality, safe bicycles.”

Training bike mechanics

Pon Logistics is going to set up twelve workstations for the purpose of repair work. André: “We try to train up two people each week to be bicycle mechanics. We now employ two bike mechanics who train others. Gradually, this will give us a full team that includes our own Pon people and some temporary workers. The temporary workers are initially hired for loading and unloading the bicycles, and then we check whether they have a feel for bikes and know which elements are important. If they do, we train them to carry out maintenance checks and some people go on to become bike mechanics. We’re going to train 12 to 15 people in total to be bicycle mechanics, so we can go full steam ahead with that.”

Tracking e-bikes

“The number of bikes we deliver for Swapfiets has grown rapidly in recent years,” André explains. “At one time, we started with approximately 170 bikes each day. Depending on the season, we now have up to eight trailers of bikes arriving and leaving on a daily basis. We also do additional jobs such as fitting all e-bikes with trackers. We recently started stocking all the parts for Swapfiets bikes here. All suppliers deliver parts to us and when Swapfiets depots order parts, we deliver them. In total, we have approximately 25 full-time employees working on our Swapfiets assignment. They’re a great customer!”

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