Paris might not be reputed for customer service – in fact, it is hyperbolically, categorically difficult to get something in France at all. Grocery shopping on a Sunday or after 9PM? Don’t count on it. Ordered that café 30 minutes ago? It’ll get there. Waiting in line in front of multiple cash registers only to find out the person behind you decided that there are multiple lines, and they are in the front of the new one? Tough luck.
But French startups are circumventing France’s classic garçons rudes by offering on-demand delivery of anything, anytime, anywhere. Earlier this year we reported that TokTokTok was on the verge of raising a massive round of funding – this startup initially started with the promise of ‘anything, anytime, anywhere,’ but quickly found out that getting meals delivered during Lunch & Dinner was a high-priority, and has since focused on this vertical.
While TokTokTok is still reportedly in the process of raising funds, another startup, Deliver.ee, has already raised €500,000, offering on-demand delivery to eCommerce sites, grocery stores & clothing stores, promising same-day delivery.
Lastly, Stootie, a startup which has taken a more peer-to-peer route, allows individuals to make requests or offers, and allows users to see what’s around them. The product has some interesting features, including a ‘garage sale‘ feature, which tells you specific items available for sale around you. Stootie has been around for some time, though it seems that the app has begun to gain traction – the app is currently featured in the App Store in France, and the offer/supply balance seems to be in place.
While many of these startups want to be Uber for delivery, or Airbnb for services, all will have to tackle major issues around logistics, supply, demand, and the economy of the entire market. Do you hire your delivery people or outsource them to the general public? Do you allow anyone to post what they have, or do you work closely with local commerce? Where does Amazon stop and where do these services begin?