AFRICA – Glovo, on demand Spanish delivery platform, is seeking to expand its operations in Africa, its leading region for growth accounting for 30% of its geographical footprint.
To spearhead the growth, the delivery start-up has unveiled plans of doubling its existing investment in the region to 50 million euros (US$59.3 million) over the next 12 months.
So far, the Barcelona-based company has invested up to €25 million (US$30 million) by bringing its delivery service to six African countries — Morocco, Uganda, Kenya, Ghana, Côte d’Ivoire and Nigeria, reports Techcrunch.
Globally, Glovo is available in 23 countries, more than 40 cities with more than 300,000 users, 8,000 restaurants and 12,000 couriers in these countries.
Over the next 12 months, the company plans to operate in around 30 countries worldwide within a year, with most new openings in Africa into markets like Tunisia, where it plans to launch in October.
According to a statement released by the company, the expansion will make Glovo’s services available to 6.5 million people.
Co-founder Sacha Michaud believes these markets are currently underserved, and Glovo has found the right opportunity to work with local restaurants, bringing them online to reach new customers in a bid to “make everything, within all towns and cities, available to everyone.”
The attention on Africa follows a series of regional moves Glovo has pulled this year. After its mammoth US$528 million Series F raise, it acquired several of Delivery Hero’s businesses in Central and Eastern Europe for US$208 million.
Glovo’s expansion activities this year have notably come on the back of regulatory challenges it is facing in its home country, Spain.
In May, the European country announced a deal recognizing all riders working with Glovo, Deliveroo and other delivery companies as salaried staff instead of contractors or gig workers.
It’s a deal that the rest of Europe might follow. However, in markets like Africa, there are fewer concerns regarding the working conditions of riders, which undoubtedly appeals to what these global players fancy.
Yet, markets like Nigeria have come its own fair share of troubles, like poor logistics infrastructure and an unpredictable regulatory environment.
Despite that, a couple of food delivery platforms like Gokada and Jumia Food, a subsidiary of e-commerce giant Jumia, have tried to scale, finding varying degrees of success doing so.
While Glovo will have to compete for market share with these players, it is bullish because of its multi-category strategy, for which grocery sales account for half of its business in some African markets.
Other than the planned expansion strategy, Executives considering taking Glovo public within three years.