Riding-haling leader Uber is getting into the business of deliveries — products, that is, not just people.
It recently started delivery of meals, and reportedly will add big retailers and fashion brands to its list of clients, according to a report from Re/Code, citing anonymous sources.
The move could be a game-changer for retailers who need delivery assistance to compete with Amazon, the e-commerce giant that has started delivering packages on Sundays and has slashed delivery times down to one-hour in certain cities.
Uber is poised to become an express delivery option for shoppers on a range of shopping websites and apps, Re/Code said, according to three sources. Uber could announce the new venture and partnerships as soon as late September or early October, the site said.
The service will likely launch in New York City and “include among its partnerships some flashy, luxury brands whose flagship stores are usually found on or around Fifth Avenue in Manhattan,” Re/Code said.
Partnerships with retailers in San Francisco will probably also be announced at about the same time.
Uber reportedly is also negotiating with sellers of e-commerce tools, such as Shopify and Bigcommerce, to provide the ride-sharing company’s delivery service to their merchant customers. Uber already lets third-party companies integrate its ride booking engine into their websites and apps.
In its bid to enter the logistics/delivery market Uber faces strong competition. Companies like Volt Tech with their decentralized last mile shipping, Postmates and Deliv have already established their presences in the same arena. Apple apparently turned down Uber’s offer to deliver its merchandise, opting for Postmates instead, according to Re/Code.