Every player in the rapid delivery bubble — and their chances of success

They're sending armies of bikes, mopeds, and drivers out into the world, and are valued in the billions. But can the rapid delivery rivals deliver?

The events of the past couple of years have sparked unforeseen disruption in a number of sectors, with the world’s population having to re-approach the way they buy their groceries in particular. Almost overnight, people on bicycles and scooters appeared all over our streets, wearing cube-shaped backpacks and promising to deliver snacks, booze, supplies, and in some cases medicine, within ten minutes. 

In our post-pandemic world, these rapid delivery services are booming, with the UK set to become a key battleground for consumers’ cash. A range of start-ups, supermarkets, and corporations – each with their own Game of Thrones-esque house insignia and colours; philosophies; and sometimes eccentric owners and backers – are keen to survive the first important wave. If they’re going to succeed, it has to be now: as major players establish themselves and continue attracting investment. Some acquire the smaller firms, and prepare to outgrow their competition. It’s all moving at breakneck speed. But simply recognising the riders on our streets is a litmus test for which services we’ll continue seeing as they become a fixture in our lives. 

So, who will survive? As of this moment, with the market starting to take shape, who are the healthiest contenders in the rapid delivery sector? Below we’ve listed the main players and rated their chances of success out of five, to give you a clearer idea of the industry right now. 

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