Meals at home. Retailers join forces with new players to conquer a new channel
From Casino in France (with Deliveroo) to Auchan in Europe (with Glovo), via Aldi in Great Britain (with Deliveroo), food retailers have multiplied partnership agreements with such unicorns of home delivery that make headlines. However, poor press about working conditions at Frichti (France) and unlicensed deliverers shows the pitfalls of partners. There have been 7 major agreements since July in Europe (see box). The battle for a customers’ stomach shares has accelerated with lockdown. “For 30 years, the share of meals -out of the fridge- has been inexorably shrinking,” comments Philippe Goetzmann, founder of his consultancy firm. Restaurants, snack bars and fast-food outlets have been grabbing market share from traditional food outlets.
Prior to Covid-19 In the U.K., 30% of meals were eaten outside the home. Within Covid-19, sales have soared for remote catering specialists whilst reducing fixed costs (IT, delivery platform, dark kitchens, labour), so becoming increasingly profitable in rural areas. They gained critical mass by winning new contracts with the biggest names in the food industry. Moreover, their previous professional customers in the restaurant business are increasingly reluctant to pay commissions of up to 30% on each dish delivered.