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South Korean convenience stores in delivery-service battle

Competition among South Korean convenience stores over delivery services is heating up.

One chain, GS25, recently launched delivery services from seven stores in Seoul in partnership with food-delivery service Coupang Eats operated by e-commerce giant Coupang.

First of all, the South Korean convenience store company plans to implement delivery services through Coupang Eats at seven stores in Seoul before expanding the scope of the service to franchise stores nationwide.

Through the service, customers can receive about 200 products at home, including prepared lunches, sandwiches and beverages that are being sold at convenience stores.

Meanwhile, GS25 had already launched a delivery service for store products in cooperation with another delivery company, Yogiyo, in April of last year.

It is running a pilot project at 10 direct management stores, and the service has been especially popular with workers during lunch and dinner time. In the nine months since the service was introduced, the monthly average number of orders reached 3000.

Furthermore, CU, another convenience store chain, is also working with Yogiyo to provide delivery services at 3000 stores across the country.

CU plans to increase the number of delivery service stores to 5000 within the first quarter and introduce around-the-clock delivery at some stores centred in the Gangnam area.

Emart24, a convenience store chain run by large discount store chain E-Mart, on the other hand, has also joined the market by offering delivery services at 35 stores since earlier this year.

South Korean convenience stores are scrambling to expand its delivery service area due to a growing number of customers accustomed to online orders and deliveries.

The delivery service also serves as a growth engine in increasing sales at convenience stores. Additional sales are generated from deliveries, and the service is quite popular especially in rainy or cloudy weather.

“We are planning to expand the number of stores that offer delivery services through various delivery platforms and partnerships to increase sales and secure customers,” a GS25 official said.

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