When Alex Yau of sister website betterRetailing visited a Gorillas ‘dark site’ in London, staff at the site revealed its main supply of ambient goods was being provided by Blakemore. As well as supplying independent stores, Blakemore also operates the Spar symbol group across the Midlands.
One member of staff at the site said: “Our big suppliers are the national wholesalers where we get the majority of our ambient goods. Blakemore is the one we use the most.
Gorillas is described as a rapid-delivery firm, which promises home deliveries in an average time of 10 minutes. The firm, and others such as Getir and Deliveroo, operate from a ‘dark site.’ These sites are closed off to the public and are used as their base for storage and delivery.
The popularity of these companies has grown alongside the demand for home delivery during the pandemic. Retail experts had previously warned that they are now a major competition for independent convenience stores, due to the speed and ease of their service.
Asked to comment on the partnership, Blakemore Wholesale Distribution managing director James Russell said: “E-commerce continues to transform the grocery industry as customer habits demand instant satisfaction. We were very quick to identify this growing trend and as a leading delivered wholesaler and supply chain provider, we are helping fulfil these demands in this developing segment of the market. Like many other distribution and wholesale providers, we supply a variety of customers in the marketplace including immediate convenience.”