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Grocery Consolidation Looms Following an Influx of Delivery Service Investments; Ocado Solutions' Luke Jensen Discusses

Grocery Consolidation Looms Following an Influx of Delivery Service Investments; Ocado Solutions' Luke Jensen Discusses



UNITED STATES - The massive shift to online grocery played a key role in the market’s viability during the pandemic, but what will this sector look like now that the country is opening back up? Grocery consolidation concerns are circling, and the next several weeks will be incredibly telling of the industry’s future.

A recent report from CNBC outlined these concerns, explaining that billions of dollars in investments have been funneled into the grocery delivery market, with venture capitalists taking particular interest in the many start-ups that launched over the past year.

Luke Jensen, Chief Executive Officer, Ocado Solutions“The amount of money that’s being put against this opportunity is grossly disproportionate to the size of the opportunity,” Luke Jensen, CEO of Ocado Solutions, told CNBC. “I suspect there will inevitably be a lot of consolidation among these players.”

Now, with such a drastic increase in competitors in this space, industry vets such as Jensen expect that significant consolidation is coming down the pike for many of these businesses. One of the main contributors, he claims, is the fact that many of these services’ top competitors were convenience stores rather than big-box grocers, so shoppers’ reliance on delivery companies may decrease post-pandemic.

A graph in CNBC's report shows the global venture capitalist (VC) deal activity in grocery delivery by quarter: 2015 to 2021 (Data credit: Pitchbook, Graph credit: Flourish)

Considering the massive investments made in 2020—Instacart topping $39 billion, Gopuff raising $8.9 billion, and significant funds directed toward China and Europe-based companies—many in the industry are curious to see where these funds will go if consolidation is on the books.

For more information and opinions on the matter, be sure to read CNBC's article in full.

AndNowUKnow will continue to keep you informed on the latest movement in the grocery sector.