ON-DEMAND Spanish delivery app, Glovo, is looking to expand its ‘dark stores’ in Spain and across Europe.

The pandemic has given a boost to on-line shopping and Glovo has done a deal with the Swiss-based real estate firm, Stoneweg, for a €100 million investment to find more distribution bases.

The so-called ‘dark stores’ are Glovo’s distribution sites and they plan to open a new centre in the Valencia area to add to their bases in Barcelona and Madrid.

The company also has outlets in Lisbon and Milan, with plans for similar stores in Bucharest, Porto and Rome.

In November, Glovo launched a dedicated unit called ‘Q-Commerce’ to stock products on behalf of businesses and have them delivered on their behalf to shoppers within 30 minutes by its team of couriers.

Glovo is very much banking that shifting trends of home shopping that were boosted during the pandemic will continue in post-vaccination Spain.

It says that its global sales shot up by 300% last year compared to the 2019 figures.

The company has partnerships with big supermarket chains like Carrefour but also boasts the likes of IKEA and L’Oreal on its partners list to show that it is far more than a grocery delivery service.

Glovo says it wants its ‘Q-Commerce’ unit to power delivery of a wide range of products from toys, music, books, flowers and beauty products to pharmacy items and groceries.

And even, in some markets, a selection of IKEA products that are small enough to fit in couriers’ backpacks.

Co-founder and CEO, Oscar Pierre, said: “In the wake of COVID-19, we believe that dark stores represent the future of post-pandemic retail, and I think we’ll see a permanent shift in consumer habits towards same-day and instant delivery.”

“We’re excited to continue to expand our offering, so that all types of businesses, from local independent stores to multi-national chains, can reach more and more customers thanks to new technological solutions and highly efficient infrastructure.”

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