Delivery firm Getir to quit UK, Europe and US and focus on Turkey | Couriers/delivery industry

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The grocery courier firm Getir is to quit the UK, Germany, the Netherlands and the US to focus on its home market of Turkey amid heavy competition and waning demand for rapid home deliveries.

The closure marks the latest shakeout of the fast grocery delivery industry which grew rapidly during the Covid pandemic but has sharply retreated since.

It is not clear how many jobs are affected. In late 2021 the group had 1,500 employees in the UK, according to accounts filed at Companies House, most of whom were likely to be delivery riders. However, the group has since ceased operating in several British cities including Liverpool and Birmingham.

The latest retreat comes after Getir cut 2,500 jobs – more than a tenth of its workforce – last year.

The company pulled out of France, Spain, Italy and Portugal as the cost of living crisis dampened demand for grocery deliveries in less than 20 minutes, while its own costs have also gone up.

Getir said it would retain its US arm FreshDirect – only bought a few months ago – and said the closures only affected 7% of sales.

Set up in 2015, Getir grew into one of the largest of more than a dozen delivery app companies, promising to deliver groceries in minutes and offering hefty discounts to attract customers.

However, most of its rivals have been sold or closed down. Those that remain have tightened their operations, laying off riders and selling warehouses.

Getir bought its German rival Gorillas in a $1.2bn (£960m) deal in 2022 after snapping up the UK’s Weezy a year earlier. The smaller London-based firm Jiffy ceased deliveries in 2022 while the US operator Gopuff bought Fancy and Dija, both UK companies, in 2021.

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Getir was valued at up to $11.8bn when it raised funds in March 2022, but its valuation was slashed to $6.5bn in a funding round in April last year.

The market continues to be highly competitive: the takeaway delivery firms Deliveroo, JustEat and Uber Eats have tied up with supermarkets to deliver groceries, while Tesco has its in-house service Whoosh, Sainsbury’s has Chop Chop and Ocado has Zoom.

One of the last remaining quick grocery specialists, Gopuff, launched in the UK in 2021, and operates in London and other big cities including Bristol, Manchester, Liverpool, Newcastle, Birmingham, Leeds and Cardiff. Zapp continues to operate in London.

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