JOKR food delivery service secures $170m funding
JOKR, a grocery and retail delivery platform, has sealed a $170m Series A funding round.
For a startup company which opts for Series A funding, the main target is usually to increase its user base and products. The funding round, led by GGV Capital, has closed after three successful months of operations in Europe and across the Americas. Headquartered in New York, JOKR now plans to expand.
JOKR offers customers a 15 minute delivery time for:
- Convenience products
- Local products
Food delivery platform JOKR is different from the rest
The company is focused on sustainability, through its desire to:
- Support small local businesses, who want to extend their customer base to sell their goods
- JOKR is keen to remove the need for complex logistics and delivery networks, giving the customers and JOKR employees an easier experience
“We are true believers in the fact that the world needs a new Amazon, a better one, a more sustainable one, one that appreciates local areas and products”, said Ralf Wenzel, founder and CEO of JOKR. “The investment we announced today will empower us to continue our expansion at an unprecedented rate as we continue to build JOKR into the premier platform for a new generation of online shopping, with instant delivery, a focus on local product offerings and more sustainable delivery and supply chains. We are proud to be able to partner with such a distinguished group of international tech investors to help us seize the enormous opportunity in front of us.”
JOKR pursues vertical integration
Despite its plans to expand, to date, the JOKR app is only available on Google Play.
“Ralf has put together an all-star team for food delivery that will, transform the retail supply chain”, said Hans Tung, Managing Partner at GGV Capital, and newly appointed member of JOKR’s board. “The combination of food delivery experience and the sophisticated data capabilities that optimizes inventory allocation and dispatch, set JOKR apart. We look forward to working with the team on their mission to make retail more instant, more democratic, and more sustainable.”
“We are close to the equivalent of Instacart, strongly grocery focused”, concludes Wenzel. “Our offering is significantly broader than the ones of Gorillas because we’re not only focusing on convenience and all kinds of different grocery categories, we’re getting closer to a supermarket offering, so the biggest competing element would be the traditional supermarkets, the offline supermarkets, as well as online grocery propositions. We are vertically integrating and hence procuring directly, cutting out middlemen and building our own distribution warehouses.”
Ireland could create template for global food sustainability
Leveraging innovation could cultivate new agricultural breakthroughs, making Ireland the most responsible and sustainable food producer on Earth, according to a renowned local luminary.
Economist and author David McWilliams has insisted that Ireland can become a pivotal carbon-neutral, resource-efficient and sustainable food producer – possibly the most influential on the planet.
He does acknowledge, however, that there are considerable obstacles on the country’s trailblazing journey to complete energy-efficient and sustainable food production.
McWilliams also claims that the widely-held belief within the EU that reducing food production thus reduces carbon emissions does not tally.
“For the European Union to get an aggregate reduction in carbon emissions,” said McWilliams at the Alltech ONE Ideas Conference. “It would seem to me much more logical to favour those countries that have had an evolutionary, ecological or environmental gift, in order to actually produce more, not less, because your input-output ratio is so much lower than it is either in the parched Mediterranean or in the frozen tundra of the North.”
Reflecting on the situation in the US, McWilliams said its agriculture output had tripled between 1948 and 2015, with exponential gains in efficiency. Surprisingly, agriculture only contributes to 7.5% of total US greenhouse gases, far below the 30% attributed to cars.
“I think American culture is changing, at least when you see it from the outside,” said McWilliams said of President Biden’s approach. “He's saying, ‘There's no point being wealthy if the wealth is only in the hands of a small minority. The wealth has to trickle down to everybody else.’”
McWilliams concluded that for Irish agriculture to modernise and grow, it should use one of Ireland’s leading sectors – technology – as a frame of reference. It currently generates over $25 billion in exports.