Deliveroo has begun working on fast grocery deliveries, the Financial Times (FT) reported.
The company has opened a “dark store” in London in partnership with supermarket chain Morrisons, according to the report.
The service is called Deliveroo Hop and will compete with several other grocery delivery startups like Gorillas, Getir and Zapp, which have become popular in the U.K., the report stated.
“There is an ambition to grow this model quickly,” said Morrisons Director of Online and Wholesale James Badger, per the report. “Society is moving in many ways to instant gratification … We want to make our Morrisons product available to as many customers as possible.”
Morrisons offers its own online service, delivering items from its own supermarkets and Ocado’s facility in Erith, southeast London, the report stated. Morrisons also works with Amazon on its Fresh grocery service.
Morrisons and Deliveroo first began working together during the start of the pandemic lockdown in 2020, and this year they’ve more than doubled their footprint to encompass 327 Morrisons locations around the country, according to the report.
The partnership involves Deliveroo’s couriers picking from the same Morrisons stores used by traditional customers, according to the report. But the new Hop warehouses will allow the companies more visibility into their stock levels, which should result in fewer missed or substituted items per delivery as well as faster delivery times overall.
The Hop service will also act as Deliveroo’s first move to become a retailer itself, per the report. Morrisons will be the wholesaler, and Deliveroo will set the customer pricing.
In other news, Deliveroo has been looking to get in on last-minute grocery services, with CEO Will Shu citing the fact that many people don’t want to pre-plan food in advance. He said prior to the launch of on-demand grocery, the fastest option was next-day. On-demand grocery grew in the first half of 2021 to be 7% of the company’s total gross transaction volume.