Food Deliveries

The Rise of the Appy Meal

Online food Colorbox
Dinner is just a click away.
  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    If the home meal delivery sector takes off in Germany, it could begin to compete with traditional grocers and restaurants.

  • Facts


    • According to Ernst & Young, online food delivery in Germany was worth €500 million in 2013, less than 1 percent of the grocery market.
    • The German online food segment is projected to grow to 10 percent of the market, and be worth about €20 billion, by 2020.
    • Rocket Internet, a Berlin start-up incubator, is investing heavily in tech-driven food providers to build a “global online takeaway group.”
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Getting what you want, and getting it fast with a few clicks, is big business these days. Buying music, e-books, booking a share-car, and reserving a holiday apartment can all happen within seconds.

But until recently, food and grocery delivery in Germany had remained stubbornly analogue. Consumers had mostly two options – go to a supermarket or have a kid on a scooter deliver a soggy pizza.

A handful of German entrepreneurs are trying to change the way people eat at home – from planning to shopping to even cooking our meals. Their goal is to banish the bewildering, the time-consuming, the wasteful or the just plain boring from our daily eating routines.

The start-ups want to do for the kitchen what Uber, Homejoy and Zalando did for taxis, housekeeping and shoes, respectively.

“Uber fixes transportation, Homejoy fixes cleaning. Marley Spoon brings cooking to you,” Fabian Siegel, the co-founder of Marley Spoon, an online meal delivery service based in Berlin, told Handelsblatt Global Edition.

This is not Mr. Siegel’s first foray into the take-away business – he was a co-founder and co-CEO of Delivery Hero, a company founded in Berlin in 2011 that received a $586 million investment from Rocket Internet, a Berlin-based start-up incubator that raised €1.4 billion in its initial public offering last October.

Mr. Siegel is not longer associated with Delivery Hero, which operates in 24 markets across five continents and currently delivers from a network of over 90,000 restaurants.

He and his partner, Till Neatby, launched Marley Spoon in Berlin last August.

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