Delivery start-up Gorillas could use some good news. First, headlines about striking bicycle couriers damaged the company’s image, then things got even worse: under pressure from investors, founder Kagan Sümer had to put his global ambitions on hold. Half of the 600 jobs at the Berlin headquarters of the company, which started just two years ago, will be eliminated.
For many customers who feel sustainable, gorillas is a business model with no prospects of profit and poorly paid employees. After all, the start-up delivers within ten minutes of the order being placed.
But the bad guy in the delivery industry, of all people, is now allying himself with an eco-pioneer and courting conscious customers. Gorillas is adding 250 products from the organic brand Alnatura to its range in one fell swoop. The two companies announced this on Wednesday morning.
For gorillas, that could help on several fronts in one fell swoop — at least a little. Founder Sümer has placed organic products at the top of the app from the very beginning. This not only helps to get trend-conscious first movers to try the delivery service. It is also an argument to justify the comparatively high prices in the app – in addition to the promise to bring groceries within a good ten minutes of ordering.
Sümer is also tackling an issue that is putting gorillas in Germany behind compared to direct competitors like Flink and other delivery models like Picnic. The Berlin entrepreneur lacks a strong partner from the established retail sector in the home market of all places – while in the Netherlands, for example, Gorillas can rely on the local retailer Jumbo not only as a supplier but also as an investor. In Great Britain, the well-known retailer Tesco is a partner, in France Casino.
It’s different in Germany: The largest German retailer Edeka, on the other hand, doesn’t want to know much about so-called quick commerce, the pursuer Rewe has even invested in the gorilla competitor Flink. That’s why Flink has Rewe own brands available – also in the organic sector.
Gorillas, on the other hand, has to rely on smaller trading partners with little market power, who also supply independent supermarkets, for example. In addition, Gorillas is building up its own contacts with brand manufacturers – a step that shouldn’t be made any easier by the current job prank concert. The partnership with Alnatura is at least a small step towards facilitating procurement. And an image one at that.
Alnatura, on the other hand, gets a foothold in another sales channel in addition to wholesale and its own supermarkets. The fact that the company, which was founded in 1984 by former Nestlé manager Götz Rehn, is fighting for market shares was shown a few years ago by a legal dispute over the listing with early partner DM. The drugstore chain belonged to Rehn’s brother-in-law, the late Götz Werner.
In the current release, Gorillas is already talking about the “next strategic milestone in the home market and the expansion of the top-class global network of trading partners”. Sümer said optimistically: “In Germany, Alnatura stands for conscious shopping like no other food brand and is the most popular food brand in the country.”
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