Irish grocery shopping platform Buymie has started listing Asda products on its app, without the supermarket’s backing.
The move comes after Buymie made its debut in England last week, partnering with Co-op to offer about 400 products for delivery to around 200,000 households across Bristol.
While Co-op’s listing on the app was approved by the chain – in what Buymie CEO Devan Hughes called “our flagship UK retail partnership” – Asda told The Grocer that ”it’s not an official Asda service or nor do we endorse”.
Buymie said it was ”not in a position to comment on a partnership with Asda”.
“As you will find in our app’s store selection page, Buymie can and does operate as an independent business,” Buymie told The Grocer.
On the ‘select store’ feature of the app, where Asda is listed, small print notes Buymie is “not necessarily affiliated with, endorsed or sponsored by the retailers mentioned above”.
Buymie – which in Ireland delivers Lidl and Tesco shopping in the greater Dublin area – has previously faced legal action after listing goods on the app without the backing of retailers. In 2016, four weeks after the app launched in Ireland, Aldi issued a cease and desist notice over the display of its logo and products within the app. Buymie responded by amending references to Aldi in the app to ‘German discounter’, as well as a billboard campaign outside Dublin-based Aldi stores.
Aldi later complained to the Advertising Standards Authority for Ireland that products listed on the app were no longer available or incorrectly priced. Buymie made changes to the app after the complaint was upheld.
Speaking on online show The Startup Van in March, Hughes said the legal action from “them” had cost Buymie €15,000 “to deal with and have lawyers involved”.
“Looking back now all of that played a much bigger role. All that noise caught the attention of another corporate – Unilever,” he said.
Unilever invested €100,000 in Buymie last year.
“We are already the leading provider of same-day grocery service in Ireland. We know there is a huge demand from consumers in the UK to also be able to have their groceries professionally picked and delivered on the same day. We help our retail partners deliver a profitable, Amazon beating, amazing same-day offering to their customers,” Hughes told The Grocer.
Buymie deliveries can be scheduled to arrive within an hour or in a slot up to a week in advance. Orders are picked in stores by a Buymie “personal shopper”. Co-op customers using the app in Bristol incur a 5.75% “platform fee”, a £1 payment processing fee and a £6.99 delivery charge. For orders under £35 there is an additional £3 “supplement fee”. For users shopping in-app from Asda, the platform fee is 15.75%.