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Waitrose & Deliveroo expand trial early to meet high demand

Waitrose is expanding its on-demand grocery trial with Deliveroo to 25 new shops across the UK to meet demand, just six weeks into a 12-week trial.

The original trial launched in September in five shops and by 20th October will be available in a further 25 locations*, including new areas such as Winchester, Hereford, Brighton, Glasgow and Solihull. 3.1 million households across the UK will now be able to enjoy Waitrose on Deliveroo for the first time, delivered in as little as under 30 minutes.

The trial partnership is proving hugely popular with Deliveroo customers. Sales at the original five shops have grown continually since the launch with half of orders being made by repeat customers.

The extended trial is expected to continue until the end of November in order to understand the potential for future growth. Waitrose is also in discussions with Deliveroo about joint community initiatives.

Waitrose has also added an additional 150 products, including a wider range of ready meals and health and beauty lines to the Deliveroo menu, taking the total number of products on the Deliveroo app to more than 650. Lemons, avocados and strawberries have been the most popular items to date.

The relationship with Deliveroo underlines the ambitions set out as part of the John Lewis Partnership’s Strategic Update in July that it intends to look at commercial partnerships to allow Waitrose to grow efficiently and give customers more convenient access to its products. An update on The Partnership's strategic plans will be announced on Friday 16th October.

Deliveroo, which works with 44,000 restaurants and 35,000 riders in the UK, has seen rapid growth and expansion in on-demand convenience and grocery delivery in recent months and is keen to build on this momentum.

The Deliveroo service complements Waitrose’s two-hour home delivery service, Waitrose Rapid, which now has over 37,000 customers, a fourfold increase compared to pre-Covid. Additionally, Waitrose.com provides online access to a full-shop range and now offers over 190,000 weekly slots, compared to 60,000 before the pandemic, with plans underway to increase capacity to 250,000 weekly slots.

James Bailey, Executive Director for Waitrose, said, “This trial has made a very promising start in attracting customers to Waitrose through an entirely new new channel - and is already contributing to significant sales growth in all of the branches where it is up and running.

“We know that our customers are continually looking for more convenience and flexibility and, at the six shops so far, they are really appreciating the chance to get what they need when they need it. Expanding the trial will test the potential for an on demand service in a much broader range of locations.”

Ajay Lakhani, Vice President of New Business, Deliveroo said, “We are delighted that Waitrose’s on-demand grocery trial with Deliveroo is proving so popular ?with customers and now covers 30 locations across the UK. As a British company we are proud to work with such a well-known and renowned British brand as Waitrose. At a worrying time for families across the country we are so pleased that even more customers across the country can now enjoy an extended range of Waitrose’s amazing food.”