Are you done with super-fast deliveries? The flash courier gorilla may have left Antwerp (Antwerp) already

They threaten to disappear as fast as they come: Gorilla Flash’s couriers. © BELGA


The lightning-fast courier profession may already be over in Antwerp. Gorillas, who delivers groceries to your home within ten minutes of ordering, are considering leaving our country. Since Gorillas was introduced a year ago, questions have been raised about how the super-fast service can ever be profitable.

Coffee, veggies, spaghetti or beer: If you want to quickly buy some food without leaving the house, you can enter your order in the Gorillas app and receive it within ten minutes. For just €1.8 in delivery costs, the prices are comparable to traditional supermarkets.

Half of office workers have been laid off

Gorillas launched in Antwerp in June 2021. Couriers on electric bikes only serve the city center, from the exhibition area in Kiel to Ellandje and part of the Bürgerhut. They pick up products at one of their warehouses, in Ankerrui and near the Old Court of Justice. At the beginning of this year, Gorillas announced an extensive cooperation with the supermarket chain Jumbo, which even bought an e-commerce promotion.

But now it looks like the beautiful song has already been sung. The German delivery worker will lay off half of his international office staff, about three hundred people, and is considering moving out of four countries, including Belgium. Gorilla, which employs about 15,000 people worldwide, is retreating to its main markets. Germany, France, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and the United States together account for 90% of the trading volume.

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Logcom فقاعة bubble

For transportation scientist Roel Jeffers (UAntwerp), this scenario isn’t a complete surprise. “We were talking about logcom . bubble‘, he says. Referring to the dot-com bubble in the 1990s, when several IT companies that had promised heaven for years went bankrupt one after another.

We’ve also recently seen parcel suppliers, e-commerce companies, and new players in logistics like Gorillas collect hundreds of millions of euros in investments, as if from legumes. But if that flow dries up, as it does now, you know hard choices must be made.”

Brussels and Antwerp

Gorillas are only active in Belgium in Brussels and Antwerp. “They’ve only made limited investments here compared to other countries and in terms of turnover, we’re nothing compared to the overall picture. If you just set the hourly wage cost against the number of deliveries — Gorillas works with permanent employees and not through subcontractors — you You know with their current prices they can’t become profitable here,” Jeffers says.

The Jumbo supermarket chain believes it is too early to respond because the gorilla’s intentions are “still being studied”. The company does not disclose the number of employees and customers Gorillas has in Antwerp.

Denton Watson

"Friend of animals everywhere. Evil twitter fan. Pop culture evangelist. Introvert."

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