Buymie expands in Britain with Asda trial in Leeds and Bristol

Grocery delivery service has identified 200 cities and towns across Ireland and Britain

On-demand grocery delivery service Buymie has launched a new one-hour delivery trial in partnership with Asda in England that will lead to the creation of 60 new jobs.

Founded by Devan Hughes and Artavazd Sokhikyan in February 2016, Buymie has been expanding in Britain of late, having already previously secured partnerships with Lidl and Dunnes Stores in the Republic.

Mr Hughes, Buymie’s chief executive, described the partnership with Asda as a “watershed moment” for the company.

“This gives us the opportunity to expand in a market that is 10 times the size of the Irish one,” he said.

The new delivery trial allows customers in Leeds and Bristol to access Asda’s full range of online products and have it delivered within 60 minutes. Customers using the service can communicate directly with a personal shopper to ensure that in instances where items aren’t available, suitable substitutes can be made.

Fruitful relationship

While only a trial, Mr Hughes said he was confident it would be the start of a long and fruitful relationship with Asda.

“We’re always focused on making sure that any trials we do turns into multiyear contracts with retailers. Our track record speaks for itself in this regard with a 100 per cent success rate to date,” he told The Irish Times.

“When it comes to large basket deliveries, Buymie is best in class and the only platform of its kind in the Irish and British markets,” he added.

Buymie expanded into Cork, Limerick and Galway during the pandemic. It also moved into the British market for the first time during this period with a partnership with the Co-Op in Bristol. The company’s service is also available in commuter towns adjoining Dublin, as well as in the capital itself.

Delivery charge

Overall, Buymie has identified 200 cities and towns across Ireland and Britain where it believes it could successfully operate.

The company has secured €15.5 million to date from backers that include Unilever, former Superquinn deputy chairman Eamonn Quinn, and Scott Weavers-Wright, who ran Morrisons online channel after the supermarket acquired his company, Kiddiecare, for £70 million.

Customers using Buymie typically pay a delivery charge of 5-13 per cent of the value of their basket of goods, depending on the retailer they use. The average basket of goods is valued at about €80.

"By partnering with Buymie we are able to offer express delivery in more locations more quickly, without the need to implement new technology, infrastructure or cause disruption to our store teams," said Simon Gregg, senior vice-president of ecommerce at Asda.

Charlie Taylor

Charlie Taylor

Charlie Taylor is a former Irish Times business journalist

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