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An Instacart 15-minute delivery service is planned to launch early next year, in a significant advance on the company’s current two-hour delivery time (with a 30-minute service available in some cities) …
Instacart is planning to launch a pilot program to provide delivery of groceries or convenience items in 15 minutes or less to U.S. customers, said two people with direct knowledge of the plan. As a part of the proposed program, Instacart would pay a company that manages couriers to quickly deliver goods from the same grocery stores whose merchandise Instacart already offers to its existing customers, most of whom currently receive their orders within two hours or less.
Instacart recently asked several logistics companies to submit proposals for the ultrafast delivery program, with plans to launch an early version of the service in a U.S. city as early as February, the people said. If it did so, Instacart would thrust itself into competition with ultrafast grocery delivery startups including Jokr, Getir and Gorillas.
What’s notable about all these instant delivery companies at present is that they are losing money – sometimes huge sums of money. New York-based Jokr, for example, lost $13.6M on just $1.7M worth of sales. Place a $10 order, and it costs the company $80 to supply and deliver it.
That’s partly because this is a business that only works at huge scale. You need warehouses (known as “dark stores”) in every neighborhood, and enough customers to sustain them all.
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