New locations being added include Derby, Telford, Dorchester, Yeovil and Corby

Deliveroo will extend availability of grocery deliveries via its platform to a further 125 towns and cities this year, the courier company has confirmed.

The Grocer understands the increased availability will come from existing supermarket partners adding stores to the platform in new areas.

Deliveroo has forged partnerships with Co-op, Sainsbury’s, Waitrose, Aldi, Morrisons and McColl’s to deliver food and household items picked by store staff to customers.

By the end of the year, the number of locations where Deliveroo users can buy groceries on the platform will total 300, the company said. New locations being added include Derby, Telford, Dorchester, Yeovil and Corby.

Deliveroo pointed to the fact half the UK population live in an area both covered by Deliveroo and served by at least one supermarket brand.

The company denied expansion of its grocery offering would involve dark stores, which it operated for a short period last year in select cities aimed at elderly and quarantining customers. Such a model has been adopted by the likes of rapid delivery services Getir and Weezy in London.

Deliveroo – which confirmed the “potential” of a long-awaited Initial Public Offering last month – has seen significant growth in grocery through the pandemic.

The company completed a funding round raising more than $180m last month – valuing it at more than $7bn – which will be used in part on “expanding on demand grocery, a service that has grown rapidly over the last year”.

This year Deliveroo plans to expand its service – covering takeaways and grocery – into 100 unserved towns and cities in the UK this year, giving four million more Brits the ability to access food on its platform. It will also be extending the reach of its services in all 150 of the towns already served.

Through 2020, the company doubled its rider count from 25,000 to more than 50,000.