Deliveroo is today opening its first physical grocery store in partnership with Morrisons.
The Deliveroo Hop store on New Oxford Street will allow customers to shop by ordering on digital kiosks or the Deliveroo app, for near-immediate collection.
The store also functions as a dark store for Deliveroo’s rapid grocery offering Deliveroo Hop, with 19 dedicated site staff fulfilling orders to be delivered by couriers to residents and offices in the local area.
The store – which is open from 8am to 11pm each day – offers a range of 1,750 grocery items, from Morrisons ‘Ready to Eat’ and ‘The Best’ ranges as well as store cupboard staples, snacks and dinner ingredients, “ready for collection or delivery in minutes”.
“We’re opening our doors and welcoming commuters, local residents, visitors and day-trippers into our first Deliveroo high street grocery store in the UK,” said Eric French, COO at Deliveroo.
“Our New Oxford Street store promises a new way to shop for Deliveroo customers, giving them even greater flexibility and choice and should help boost the local area, with nearly two-thirds of shoppers saying they will visit other nearby shops as they come to shop with Deliveroo,” he added.
The company called the store – which has been secured on a multi-year lease – the “latest evolution” in its rapid grocery service, which will “meet the needs of busy Londoners and visitors by offering a quick and convenient way to shop”.
“The launch of Deliveroo Hop’s first bricks and mortar store represents another key moment in our partnership,” said Hannah Horsfall, head of wholesale at Morrisons.
“The store will not only offer customers a wide choice of groceries from Morrisons but also a variety of ways to shop for them,” she added.
Research commissioned by Deliveroo found nearly a quarter (24%) of Londoners now use rapid grocery services once a week to get their groceries. On average 40% of shoppers reported buying groceries once every two to three days, “bucking the age-old ‘weekly shop’ trends”, the company said.
The survey also found more than a third of people (35%) decide what they’re having for dinner on the day and, of those, 29% will buy at least some of the ingredients on the day.
Deliveroo Hop first launched in September last year and now operates across 16 sites in the UK, France, Italy, Hong Kong and the UAE.
Hop is also offered on a ‘Hop as a service’ basis, the first adopters being upmarket grocery outlet Supermarket of Dreams in London and Auchan in Lille and Paris.
Several rapid grocers have opened their dark stores to the public, with ordering kiosks, app order collection points and coffee shops. Gorillas in July launched a coffee shop at its Hampstead dark store, which also offers click & collect; Gopuff operates a handful of stores in the US that allow customers to order from a digital kiosk on site, and have their order immediately put together behind the scenes; and in May, grocery delivery service Nippy secured funding to open three new dark stores, which will double as walk-in shops where customers can browse shelves. Earlier this year, Getir began a customer click & collect trial from several of its dark stores.
Across Europe, there is growing resistance to rapid grocery dark stores, with several cities taking action to ban them or limit their locations.
Deliveroo said “being a good neighbour is hugely important to everyone at Deliveroo”, and the site features a screened-off, designated parking area for riders towards the back of the shop, where couriers will leave their bikes and come into the shop to collect orders.
“We have plans in place if any queues of customers develop. Not that we’re expecting queues – it will be a matter of minutes to order and collect groceries,” the company added.