Uber announced that it was teaming up with delivery startup Gopuff to expand its delivery business. Gopuff, which acquired liquor store chain BevMo last year, will make its inventory of convenience and grocery store items available to Uber as part of this new deal. The companies plan to roll out their new offerings to customers in 95 cities starting this June and nationwide later in the year.
GoPuff will handle logistics and delivery for the orders, and Uber will take a percentage of each transaction made through its app, according to Bloomberg News.
The coronavirus pandemic transformed Uber into a delivery company when demand abruptly shifted away from ride-hailing. Gross bookings from delivery more than doubled last year to $30.2 billion. Uber embraced the change by bolstering its food delivery business with the $2.65 billion acquisition of Postmates and by adding groceries and other goods, including alcohol with the purchase of another startup, Drizly, the Bloomberg report said.
Delivery services grew dramatically during the pandemic, with many opting to stay home and avoid crowded grocery stores.
Since the start of the year, the volume of searches for grocery and convenience store items grew 40%, Raj Beri, Uber’s head of grocery and new verticals delivery, told Bloomberg. The partnership makes Uber more competitive against Amazon and Instacart.
According to Bloomberg, the most-ordered items on GoPuff last week were toilet paper, White Claw hard seltzer and Tylenol, the startup said. The first locations where Uber will offer GoPuff inventory include Chicago, Houston and Miami.