Delivery of groceries between individuals, a more promising market than it seems

The unit is not the only e-commerce solution for mass distribution in France. Home delivery startups are already sharing a just-in-the-making market.

Caught between the hustle and bustle, home delivery by individuals acts like a poor relative. Although the unit is particularly well established in France, home delivery of groceries by an individual and a supermarket is not developed in France. “The French market is really special because the unit is very present there and a little alone in the world”, observes Anaïs Jollivet, director of Verlinvest. This fund invested in 2021 in Everli, a home shopping delivery solution for self-employed workers. “The consumer has a repertoire of solutions that he has in mind according to his needs and often the drive will be the only e-commerce solution he will think of. E.Leclerc evangelized the drive throughout the territory. less widespread than in other markets in Europe or the United States”, he evaluates.

If we look at the food e-commerce numbers published by NielsenIQ in May 2022, the drive-thru is a giant in this market and represents 90% of the online food retail market. Home delivery market shares are split between large food stores (48%), pure players (26%), food delivery people like Uber Eats and Deliveroo (14%), and finally fast trade (12%). The latter got a lot of ink flowing, but it remains a minority. It is mainly present in Paris and Île-de-France, where it accounts for 24% of home deliveries. “Fast commerce is a very concentrated market in big cities, with small baskets and CSP+ customers, believes Anaïs Jollivet of Verlinvest. The home delivery market is much bigger because it affects the rest of France and many more consumers in the long run”, she continues.

Two different models

The French Shopopop was founded in Nantes in April 2016 and indicates that it unites one million users around its collaborative shopping delivery solution. “We are not an Uber and we will not become one,” says Yohan Ricut, one of the co-founders. “Our service has found its place because it meets the new standards demanded by brands with the possibility of delivery in H+2 and reduced environmental impact. We make trips in pool and it is common sense to resort to our solutions instead of using a truck for three orders” , to be continued. Shopopop is positioned as an additional income for its shoppers who will collect customer purchases at a drive-thru and bring them between 5 and 10 euros per delivery. “Our shoppers will make an average of 6 to 10 deliveries per month for 150 to 200 euros received”, says Yohan Ricut.

If Shopopop developed its service thanks to independents such as Système U and E.Leclerc, the start-up is now established throughout France, with 16,000 municipalities served and works with most major retailers, both independent and integrated. Shopopop announced that it organized 1.5 million deliveries in 2021 to 2,000 partner stores.

Ahead, the Italian Everli, who arrived in France at the end of 2020, offers a model similar to that of Instacart in the United States. The customer prepares his basket on the platform and a shopper, on his own, takes care of the purchases and delivers it to him afterwards. “We work with Carrefour or Casino and we offer more than 10,000 references”, explains Caroline Hill, general manager of Everli France. Our buyers can work with us to supplement their income or as a main activity. which depends on the size of the order and the number of kilometers traveled”.

The difference between the two models is not only in the way the shopper or delivery person is viewed, but also in the general functioning. “In our model, the brand retains ownership of the customer’s data,” explains Yohan Ricut of Shopopop. A pop-up offering the Shopopop service appears on the distributor’s website when the customer pays. “Remuneration is between the store and the shopper. The store pays a fixed fee and we receive a 20% commission on delivery costs”, he continues.

At Everli, the customer prepares their basket directly on the platform. “A player like Everli gives access to 100% of the store’s stock, points out Anaïs Jollivet from Verlinvest. If Shopopop goes through the distributor’s website, Everli is a consumer platform that will directly offer the stock of Lidl or Carrefour products.”.

A growing market

Shopopop like Everli aspire to conquer Europe. The start-up from Nantes is already present in Benelux, Portugal, Spain, Italy and is currently being implemented in Germany. However, they don’t see themselves as competitors: “If we went to the American market, we could differentiate ourselves through our social and environmental model”, explains Yohan Ricut, from Shopopop. Amazon Flex and Instacart offer very different shopping paths than ours.

The home shopping delivery market also appears to have room to accommodate several other players in France. “Large retailers find it difficult to invest in e-commerce because it is expensive, points out Anaïs Jollivet from Verlinvest, it takes time to set up warehouses like Ocado and gather the necessary resources”. The bet of funds that invest in home delivery companies by individuals is to say that “electronic grocery stores are of interest to large retailers and retailers will need the services of these companies. need funds to start in the territory and in a difficult but promising market”, concludes Anaïs Jollivet.

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