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Innovator Profile: Lula Delivery Helps Small Businesses Digitalize Their Inventory and Reach Online Shoppers

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Coresight Research
Free Report

What's Inside

On September 19, 2022, Deborah Weinswig, CEO and Founder of Coresight Research, will emcee and feature on the judging panel of Groceryshop 2022’s “Shark Reef” startup pitch competition, which will see 12 early-stage innovators compete to win the Judges’ Choice and Audience Choice awards.

In the lead-up to the event, we are profiling the participating innovators. In this free report, we present Lula Delivery, a retail delivery platform that helps retailers to digitalize inventory, reach online shoppers and optimize the last mile by aggregating existing delivery services.

  • Read more from Groceryshop 2022, including other innovator profiles in the lead-up to the event as well as daily event coverage reports.
  • Click here to access more Coresight Research reports on grocery retail.

This report forms part of our Innovator Profile series, which focuses on emerging technologies that are disrupting traditional retail and fueling innovation across the retail value chain.

Click here to read more innovator research (including Innovator Profile reports) from Coresight Research.

Executive Summary

  • Lula Delivery assists small to mid-size retailers, primarily convenience and grocery stores, to digitalize their physical inventory and reach more online shoppers, fueled by increasing consumer demand for delivery of everyday and essential items.
  • The company’s delivery platform is connected to major delivery services, including Uber Eats and Postmates. It allows retailers to track and manage orders across all services from its central platform.
  • Coresight Research’s US Online Grocery Survey 2022 found that 49.0% of online grocery shoppers mainly use home delivery as fulfillment, up from 47.5% in pre-pandemic 2019, and making it more popular than collection.

What We Think

As the convenience of delivery for everyday items and groceries becomes increasingly popular, small to mid-size retailers that carry these products would benefit from digitalizing their physical inventory and should seek to expand their presence across delivery services to reach more shoppers.

Introduction

The Coresight Research team will attend and participate in this year’s Groceryshop conference, which will be held on September 19–22, 2022, in Las Vegas, US. Groceryshop 2022 will explore the changing grocery landscape and help businesses navigate the rapid rise in e-commerce, the latest business models and technologies, and the shifting consumer behaviors that are impacting the industry.

On September 19, 2022, Deborah Weinswig, CEO and Founder of Coresight Research, will emcee and feature on the judging panel of Groceryshop 2022’s “Shark Reef” startup pitch competition, which will see 12 early-stage innovators compete to win the Judges’ Choice and Audience Choice awards. In the lead-up to the event, we are profiling the participating innovators.

This report forms part of our Innovator Profile series, which focuses on emerging technologies that are disrupting traditional retail and fueling innovation across the retail value chain. We present Lula Delivery, a retail delivery platform that helps retailers to digitalize inventory, reach online shoppers and optimize the last mile by aggregating existing delivery services. Coresight Research collaborated with Lula Delivery to offer insights into its capabilities and offerings.

Areas of Innovation

Coresight Research categorizes the 12 participating innovators into three areas of innovation in retail: fulfillment and sustainability; product marketing and merchandising; and AI (artificial intelligence), ML (machine learning) and automation. Lula Delivery falls under “fulfillment and sustainability.”

Fulfillment (the last mile) is often one of the most complex and costly processes in the supply chain, while sustainability is increasingly gaining attention from stakeholders. Technology innovators focused on these areas can assist brands and retailers in improving efficiency, transparency and sustainability in the supply chain, as well as supporting them in saving costs.

Lula Delivery: In Detail

Lula Delivery

Headquarters

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, US

Funding Stage

Pre-Series A

Total funding raised: $6.5 million

Company Description

Founded in 2020, Lula Delivery assists small to mid-size retailers, primarily grocery and convenience stores, to digitalize their physical inventory for online sales and delivery.

The company enables retailers to create and upload a digital store profile with updated inventory information and a digital presence across major delivery providers, including Uber Eats, Postmates and Grubhub.

Lula Delivery enables retailers to manage all orders, inventory and delivery from its central platform. The platform also has analysis capabilities, providing order insights into total sales, new customers and inventory levels, with the goal of enabling retailers to track their performance and grow their stores.

The company aims to help its retail partners participate in the fast growth of online shopping for everyday items by giving them a simple way to leverage existing delivery platforms to deliver their goods.

Lula
Source: Company website

 

What Problem Is the Company Solving?

Given the challenge of executing efficient last-mile deliveries, small independent retailers often struggle to access online shoppers seeking the convenience of deliveries for essentials and grocery items.

As such, many of these retailers resort to trying to manage orders from numerous companies across multiple different applications. The inefficiency of this process makes last-mile deliveries for smaller retailers more costly and less productive.

Lula Delivery bridges the gap between online consumer demand for delivery of everyday items and the supply of these items from nearby brick-and-mortar stores. As such, users can expand their reach to the vast online convenience and grocery store market in a way that smaller stores would otherwise not have the bandwidth to execute.

Market Opportunity

Many consumers are opting for home delivery of everyday items and groceries over collection services. Coresight Research’s US Online Grocery Survey 2022 found that 49.0% of online grocery shoppers mainly use home delivery as fulfillment, up from 47.5% in pre-pandemic 2019, and making it more popular than collection. This highlights the popularity of shoppers getting everyday items, often from grocery and convenience stores, delivered to their doorstep rather than visiting a store to pick up orders.

We believe that consumers will retain their preference for delivery as a fulfillment method, particularly for groceries, snacks and over-the-counter medicine, which presents a big opportunity for nearby convenience and grocery stores. According to 2022 data from NACS, there are 148,000 convenience stores in the US and 43% of Americans live within one mile of one of these stores, highlighting the opportunity for these stores to supply demand for delivery of everyday items and groceries. The advance of innovative retail technologies and fulfillment strategies will likely bolster the growth of the last-mile market for everyday items and groceries.

What We Think

As consumers explore the convenience of delivery of everyday items to their doorstep, often from convenience and grocery stores, small to mid-size retailers that carry these items should look to digitalize their physical inventories and supply the demand for these items.

We believe that the trend toward online convenience and grocery store shopping and delivery will continue—retailers that shift toward a more omnichannel model that bridges physical inventory and online demand can better compete against larger retailers in the market.

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