Grocery Delivery Digest

June 30, 2020

Ian Cook, Managing Editor

Just when normalcy seemed on the horizon, with the potential of delivery and pick-up leveling off and more people going back into grocery stores and restaurants, we see an uptick in new COVID-19 cases. Hopefully we get this under control quickly and we can get back to safely opening the economy. Regardless, it is looking more and more like delivery and curbside pick-up are going to play a large role moving forward.

Stores and restaurants continue to try to figure out where to invest:  delivery or pick-up? Ultimately the customer will decide, but the brands can certainly have an influence based on where they focus their attention, research, and marketing dollars. Interestingly, this is the second week in a row that the Wall Street Journal had an article favoring pick-up over delivery.

You will also see several articles on ghost kitchens. I love the creativity, and it looks like a great opportunity for restaurants and, as Kroger has demonstrated, grocery stores with kitchens. Brinker International and WingStop are some of the industry leaders who seem to have jumped right in. I’m sure more will follow as it is a great way to test new concepts and brands with relatively little risk.

We think you will get a lot out of this week’s newsletter. Please feel free to send us comments on anything we can do to improve it for you!   Have a great week!

Issue #10

Webinar Recording: Consumer Off-Premise Eating Trends

The OnTrend Concepts team enjoyed this webinar on Consumer Off-Premise Easting Trends. Watch the recorded version us to hear the latest research on off-premise dining trends from Datassential. You’ll hear about the newest developments in this area and gain insights into the consumer preferences and habits driving them.


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Upcoming Webinar: Online Grocery: The Battle of the Business Models

This is the second episode of a multi-part series discussing how the produce industry can thrive in the rapidly-evolving online shopping marketplace.


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Wall Street Journal: Pickup Gains Ground Over Delivery

Many restaurants and supermarkets prefer the lower costs and hassle of having customers collect orders at stores.


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Domino’s Expands Delivery Options

Domino’s Pizza, long-time delivery expert, is now offering carside delivery service, allowing customers to stay in their cars while one of the pizza company’s workers delivers their order to them.


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Target is Offering Fresh Grocery Products via In-Store and Curbside Pickup

The retailer announced that it's starting to offer 750 fresh grocery items through its Order Pickup and Drive Up services.


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Sobeys Launches Online Grocery Delivery Service in Canada

Voilà by Sobeys, an online grocery delivery service, has launched in the greater Toronto area. The e-commerce platform is powered by Ocado technology and customer fulfillment centers.


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Aldi Ireland Announces New On-Demand Home Delivery Service thru Deliveroo

Supermarket chain Aldi has announced that they are trialling an on-demand grocery home delivery service. In partnership with Deliveroo, the supermarket brand is offering a ‘rapid delivery service’.


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Vroom Delivery Partners with 7-Eleven Hawaii to Offer Customers eCommerce and Home Delivery

Vroom Delivery has partnered with 7-Eleven Hawaii to offer e-commerce and home delivery to its customers. Residents of and visitors to the islands will now be able order many 7-Eleven items online, including local favorites such as Spam® Musubi and pork hash, as well as grocery staples, snacks, beer and more.


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Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods Get Boost From Delivery Apps

Takeout fake meat sandwich sales soared during the pandemic and remain elevated.


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Wincanton Wins Transformational eCommerce Opportunity with Waitrose

Wincanton today announces it has been chosen by Waitrose (“Waitrose and Partners”) to create a Customer Fulfilment Centre (CFC) for Waitrose.com online grocery home deliveries – a ‘first’ for the third-party logistics market.


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Tencent, Primavera Said to Fund Grocery App at $3 Billion Value

Investors including Tencent Holdings Ltd. and private equity giant Primavera Capital are joining a funding round that values Chinese grocery delivery upstart Xingsheng Youxuan at $3 billion.


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SevenRooms Raises $50M to Double Down on Reservations, Ordering and Other Tools for Hospitality Businesses

A startup called SevenRooms, which builds software to help those venues with their guest management, is announcing a growth round of $50 million — to double down on providing tools for venues that now have to handle a whole new layer of management to implement social distancing and more.


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Amazon Could Slash Delivery Costs With $1 Billion Zoox Acquisition

Amazon announced early Friday its intent to acquire Zoox, a privately held company that has been working on autonomous driving technology. The deal, reported to be worth more than $1 billion, would be the e-commerce giant’s biggest move yet into self-driving, but Zoox’s technology could in time feed into Amazon’s larger logistics strategy as it seeks to reduce e-commerce fulfillment expenses.


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Customer Data is the Hidden Value in Food-Delivery Transactions

These third-party services benefit from fees that they charge both the customer and business, of course. But they also harvest something much more valuable: customer data. Perhaps the most valuable resource that comes from a transaction is the data analytics about the customer — such as personal information (i.e. name, email, etc.) and/or customer behavior (i.e., product preferences and “basket” size). This could be a great reason to keep delivery services in-house.


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COVID-19 Impact Report for Restaurants

Throughout it all, Revenue Management Solutions has been supporting their clients to make the best decisions for their brand under these unprecedented circumstances. Now, as countries start to reopen, they are being asked new questions about how to adjust to the ever-changing environment. To help guide clients this week, they have collected the following information for your consideration as of Friday, June 26th.


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Will Delivery and Takeout be the New Norm? Here is How to Get the Kitchen Ready.

Even as restrictions on in-person dining begin to ease across the country, the effect of several months of change may be long-lasting and may require restaurants to consider how best to meet new needs. Many experts anticipate the coronavirus response will hasten and amplify the previous trend toward delivery.


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Full-Service Restaurants Embrace Off-Premises Menu Innovation

“[Full service’s] lack of preparedness for off-premises has been pretty hard for the sector to deal with over the last few months,” says Tasso Roumeliotis, CEO of Numa, an AI-powered service that answers businesses’ missed calls and texts. “There’s still a lot of user experience that needs to be optimized.”


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Our Ghost-Kitchen Future

The branding and food are real, but the restaurants do not exist elsewhere in the physical world; consumers, presumably, are none the wiser. Uber Eats has facilitated seven thousand virtual restaurants, more than four thousand of which are in North America. Using data from in-app searches, Uber Eats identifies opportunities for certain cuisines in various neighborhoods, then approaches existing brick-and-mortar restaurateurs to pitch them the idea of launching a virtual restaurant.


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Restaurant Chains Jump on Ghost Kitchen Trend to Boost Sales During COVID-19

Large restaurant chains are accelerating their adoption of the design, in which centralized kitchens pump out orders without the need for a dining room, amid a surge in demand during the pandemic, and the trend may be here to stay.


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Virtual 'Ghost' Kitchens Expanding throughout Nation, including Los Angeles Amid Coronavirus Pandemic

The way we eat out has changed time and time again because of COVID-19, and the culinary director of Dog Haus says the virtual or "ghost" kitchen concept is here just in time.


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Does the Future Belong to Ghost Kitchens and Virtual Restaurants?

While the interest of the entire restaurant sector in delivery or take-out is currently the subject of particular attention, this trend is not new. A 2019 report from the National Restaurant Association indicated that 80% of restaurateurs consider takeaway delivery or sale to be an area of ​​vital interest.


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Dog Haus Goes All-In on Ghost Kitchen Strategy

Dog Haus isn’t just testing the waters of the virtual kitchen space. The craft casual concept known for its gourmet hot dogs, sausages, burgers and one-of-a-kind creations is going all in.


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Made in Idaho: 'Crave' Crafts New Concept in Food Delivery

Renowned restaurants all under one roof. Kind of a mix between a ghost kitchen and pop-up restaurants.


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Chili’s Parent Brinker Creates a National Delivery-Only Wings Chain “Virtually Overnight”

This new type of ghost kitchen could be what saves restaurants after the COVID-19 pandemic.


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Wingstop to Subdivide Territories, Explore Ghost Kitchens

With two delivery-only locations open in London, Wingstop is accelerating its evaluation of U.S. ghost kitchen sites, which Jobe said could have a more significant long-term role for the company’s expansion strategy, as well as reformatting existing locations to improve ingress and egress for takeout customers and delivery drivers.


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Chipotle Mexican Grill adds Grubhub as New Delivery Partner

The fast-casual chain, which has seen digital sales soar during the coronavirus pandemic, also works with Postmates, DoorDash and Uber Eats.


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BJ's Restaurants Banks on Off-Premise Sales Amid Coronavirus

BJ's Restaurants continues to focus on off-premise services, digitization and menu innovation to revive its top line. In the past three months, shares of the company have surged 34.1% compared with the industry’s 14.1% growth. However, decline in restaurant-level margin due to high labor and operating costs, along with coronavirus-related woes pose concerns.


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4 Restaurant Stocks to Gain From Off-Premise Sales

During the pandemic-triggered lockdown, many prominent restaurants around the country shifted their business models drastically in a bid to keep up with the changing scenario. The digital innovation and adoption of new business models not only made these companies resilient during the pandemic but also ensured that these can continue to avail new-found methods to keep up with the demand for their products and generate revenues the way they did in the pre-pandemic environment.


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Consumers are Eating More Restaurant Meals, but Many are More Cautious about Going Out to Eat

A Bank of America survey of 1,000 people showed that nearly 60% of respondents in April said they would feel comfortable going to a restaurant before Labor Day, but the June 18 survey found just 48% would be comfortable.


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Darden Restaurants CEO Says Consumer Behavior Hasn’t Changed

Darden Restaurants CEO Gene Lee said that the company has not seen consumer behavior change. Said the Olive Garden owner could pivot to off-premise again if needed, but the transition would happen on a smaller scale.


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Wolfgang Puck on Leading His Restaurants through the Pandemic

Wolfgang Puck, the celebrity chef, has been facing many of the same challenges that restaurateurs all over the world are dealing with: How do you preserve and even grow your business during a lockdown? And how do you begin to reopen safely?


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Georgia House Passes Bill Allowing at Home Alcohol Delivery from Stores and Restaurants

As home delivery becomes increasingly popular during the coronavirus pandemic. Many think at home alcohol delivery is a great idea. It's less work for them, less risk on the roads, and less contact in crowded stores. Restaurant owners say they're in favor, too, because they generate a lot of money from alcohol sales, and so do liquor stores.


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Texas Bars and Restaurants Can Now Legally Sell To-Go Cocktails

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott approved a special waiver allowing the sale of mixed drinks over the weekend.


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Long-Term Changes Coming to the Restaurant Industry

The pace and slope of recovery will be uneven across different segments, he added, with limited-service, off-premises and chain restaurants emerging as winners. Other long-term impacts include greater M&A opportunities, faster ramp-up of digital capabilities beyond online ordering and delivery, and a deeper focus on automation and ghost kitchens.


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A Lipstick With Your Pizza? Why Beauty Brands Are Linking Up With Food Delivery Giants

On-demand services have helped the likes of Sephora reach consumers and boost sales in China. But as consumption habits shift, they could have a bigger role to play everywhere.


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Food Retailers Need to Connect to True Reefer Logistics Expertise

Having the right supply in the wrong place is essentially having no supply at all. Speedy and efficient global logistics increases the return on investment of comprehensive supply requirements.


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Claim: Delivery Services Are Profiting While Restaurants Struggle

Grubhub and DoorDash are charging restaurants big fees. Some cities have intervened.


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Seattle's Irrational "Premium Pay" Mandate For Grocery Delivery Upends Economic Liberties

While some of the City's residents were busy declaring part of the city an autonomous zone, Seattle's City Council quietly seized control of some private grocery-delivery businesses with a sweeping new ordinance. The ordinance is a breathtaking abuse of the city's police power, one that cannot possibly withstand a legal challenge.


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Square's New Approach to Food Delivery

Square's solving a massive pain point for small restaurants using food delivery apps.


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Giant Food Launches Single, Integrated E-Commerce Site

Giant Food is merging its Giantfood.com and Peapod.com sites to create a simplified grocery e-commerce site for customers at Giantfood.com.


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A 'Bullish' Outlook for Cold Storage Arises from Pandemic

CBRE's latest weekly podcast focused on the cold storage sector. GlobeSt.com talked to CBRE's Matthew Walaszek, who helped put the podcast together.


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from the Vault: A YouTube Video Looking Inside A Warehouse Where Thousands Of Robots Pack Groceries

From 2018, but worth a look. Ocado's warehouse has thousands of robots zooming around a grid system to pack groceries. The thousands of robots can process 65,000 orders every week. They communicate on a 4G network to avoid bumping into each other. Is this the future of retail?


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Why is there Demand for More Cold Storage Space?

A shift in consumer preferences for fresh items combined with growing interest in grocery eCommerce has meant that cold storage facilities are seeing surging demand. Trevor Ragsdale and Tim O'Rourke explain what that new demand means for real estate investors and speculative developers.


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Cold Storage: Complex and Costly

A recent CBRE report suggested that an additional 75 million to 100 million square feet of industrial freezer/cooler space will be needed to meet the demand generated by online grocery sales in the next five years.


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Net Lease-Friendly Ghost Kitchens

We will continue to see more and more Ghost Kitchens pop up in key markets across the county to accommodate growing demand.


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China’s Major Ride-Hailing And Food Delivery Players See A Resurgence In The Shadow Of Covid-19

Chinese ride-hailing giant Didi Chuxing and delivery firm Meituan Dianping have started to see a rebound in business after the initial shocks of the Covid-19 pandemic but the future still looks rocky.


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In the Philippine, Kitchen City Innovates with Frozen Food Delivery to Keep Employees Amid Pandemic

Over 100 Kitchen City cafeterias have innovated with Frozen Food Delivery to cope with the coronavirus pandemic.


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In the Philippines, Grab Expands Grocery Delivery Service GrabMart

You can get groceries from Lawson, Robinsons Supermarkets, FamilyMart, Generika, and Meat Depot delivered via on-demand service GrabMart.


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Philippine Investment Firm SM in Talks with Partners for Grocery Delivery Service

SM Investments Corp. on Wednesday said it was engaged in talks to develop a grocery delivery service, banking on the growth of e-commerce. According to SM president and chief executive officer Frederic DyBuncio, efforts are now underway for third-party delivery services. SM's retail brands include The SM Store, SM Supermarket, SM Hypermarket, SaveMore, Walter Mart Supermarket, and Alfamart.


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In UAE, Convenience Chain ZOOM Partners with Talabat to Launch Home Delivery Service

ZOOM, the UAE’s leading, home-grown convenience store, partnered with Talabat home delivery to enhance its e-shopping offering for customers.


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