Source: Gopuff

US rapid delivery player Gopuff has launched in 10 UK cities, with an ambition to deliver groceries to customers in “just minutes” in 33 UK locations by the middle of next year.

Gopuff is from today operational in Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Leeds, Liverpool, London, Manchester, Newcastle, Nottingham and Sheffield.

The company – which operates more than 500 micro-fulfilment centres, BevMo and Liquor Barn stores across North America and Europe – acquired UK rapid grocers Fancy in May and Dija in August. The UK launch “marks the transition of both Fancy and Dija to the Gopuff app” Gopuff said.

The UK is the first market Gopuff has launched in under its own brand after the US.

“Over the last eight years we have continued to define the instant needs category and shown significant and sustainable growth across the US. Our goal was always to be the world’s go-to solution for everyday needs, and making Gopuff available in the UK is just the start of our international expansion,” said Yakir Gola, co-founder and co-CEO of Gopuff.

“The well-established relationships, expertise, and infrastructure Fancy and Dija provide us, along with strong local ties in all the communities we’re now operating in, will be invaluable,” he added.

A “diverse assortment of products” are available on the platform – including groceries, baby and pet essentials, and over-the-counter medications – supplied by brands such as artisanal ice cream maker Little Moons, independent coffee brand Noxy Brothers, plant-based food Deliciously Ella and challenger brands from Young Foodies.

Given Gopuff “selects, sources and prices its own inventory” the company has “end-to-end control of the supply chain” it said, and makes its money on the margin per product and flat delivery fee of £1.79 per order.

Gopuff – which was founded in 2013 – in August secured $1bn in new funding, valuing the business at $15bn, which came just months after a $1.15bn fundraise which more than doubled its valuation. Expansion across the US continues, with the service launching in over a dozen locations in New York last month with plans to double the number of dark stores in the city by Christmas.

The company said its “proven business model” was “prime for the UK market due to the number of densely populated cities and increased market demand for instant needs services”.

“When looking at expanding into Europe, we were extremely attracted to the similar models, infrastructure, loyal customer bases and talent we saw in both Dija and Fancy,” said Rafael IIishayev, co-founder and co-CEO of Gopuff.

“By combining Gopuff’s technology, scale and deep experience leveraging existing physical infrastructure, with the local market knowledge and entrepreneurial spirit of the Fancy and Dija teams, we can bring a game-changing and unparalleled experience to UK customers.”

Through its acquisitions and expansion Gopuff has more than 1,000 employees In Europe, including its riders, with more than two-thirds of these in the UK.

European operations are overseen by former Revolut chief operating officer Steven Harman, Gopuff’s senior VP of European operations, and former Amazon executives Darin Manney and Alex Ootes, VP of international finance and VP of European category management and product respectively. Gopuff’s UK general manager is Alberto Menolascina, co-founder of Dija and Deliveroo’s director of corporate strategy before leaving the company in late 2018.