Uber Launches Grocery Delivery in Canada, Will Expand to U.S.

The announcement comes amidst record highs in online grocery delivery numbers.

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Need to Know

  • Orders can be placed through Uber or Uber Eats and will be fulfilled by grocery delivery service Cornershop, whose acquisition Uber announced in late 2019.
  • The initial launch will roll out in 19 cities in Canada, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, and Peru, with expansion to US cities to follow in late July.
  • Orders from grocery and convenience stores via Uber have increased by 197% since March.

Analysis

Uber has entered the grocery-delivery business in earnest, announcing on Tuesday that it has partnered with Cornershop to bring grocery delivery to customers in Canada and Latin America.

Starting July 7, Uber and Uber Eats customers can place grocery orders via those apps. The deliveries will then be fulfilled by a Cornershop courier, and can be tracked within Uber or Uber Eats.

Uber is launching the service—which comes nine months after it announced its plan to acquire Cornershop—to fulfill what it says is a growing demand for home grocery delivery. That demand has spiked by 197% since March as users order food from available grocers and convenience stores within Uber Eats amid the COVID-19 pandemic. According to a post on Uber’s website announcing the Cornershop integration, the company has already partnered with roughly 9,500 merchants across 35 countries in Uber Eats to bring customers contact-free grocery delivery. Partnering with Cornershop is “another step towards our vision of bringing you closer to the things you need, all in one place,” the post reads.

The move will help Uber better serve a market that has shifted significantly towards online grocery buying in the wake of COVID-19. In the U.S., online grocery purchases hit $7.2-billion in June, an enormous spike over the $4-billion seen in March 2020, when lockdown measures in North America first began. In addition, the customer base for online grocery purchases ballooned from 39.5 million monthly active users in March to 45.6 million in June.

It will also allow Uber to better compete with Lyft: the rival ride-sharing company announced Essential Deliveries, its grocery-delivery program, in April.

Uber’s grocery delivery integration is now available in select Canadian and Latin American cities and will roll out in the U.S. in the coming months.

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