Uber is expanding its already substantial delivery empire, this time by purchasing Boston-based alcohol delivery service Drizly. The sale price is reportedly set at $1.1 billion — 90 percent of which will be paid in Uber stock — and the two companies expect the deal to close sometime in the first half of 2021.
Drizly first launched its service in Greater Boston in 2013 (it is now ubiquitous here, and the go-to mechanism by which to pay, like, $42 for 10 beers), and has become increasingly popular since the onset of the pandemic — its revenue expanded by an astounding 300 percent in 2020.
Uber’s ride-hailing revenues have taken a hit since the onset of the pandemic, though its food delivery revenues have grown, so the purchase of another successful third-party delivery app appears to be a no-brainer. It’s already in the habit of doing so, after all — Uber recently bought competitor Postmates (although it failed to acquire Grubhub) for a cool $2.65 billion, making its acquisition of Drizly look like a bargain by comparison.
Drizly is a bit different than other third-party delivery apps in that it doesn’t deliver anything itself, it merely provides stores with technology that enables them to deliver alcohol. Individual stores then hire their own fleet of drivers to make deliveries. The Drizly alcohol marketplace will eventually appear on the Uber Eats app, however, users will still be able to order directly through the Drizly app, which will remain operational after the acquisition.
Uber’s recent shopping spree also includes pouring millions and millions of dollars into a ballot measure in last year’s California election to deny its delivery drivers vital employment protections (like health insurance), opting to continue classifying them as independent contractors instead. The ballot measure, known officially as Proposition 22, passed and is considered a significant blow for workers’ rights in California, and potentially nationwide. Fun times.
• Uber Is Buying Alcohol Delivery Service Drizly for $1.1 Billion [V]
• Uber Buys Boston-Based Alcohol Delivery Service Drizly for $1.1 Billion [BG]
• Uber Is Still Getting Hammered by COVID, Though Things Are Looking Slightly Better [V]
• Uber Eats Launches National ‘Listening Tour’ After Buying Postmates for $2.65 Billion [E]
• Grubhub Spurns Uber and Will Merge with Europe’s Just Eat Takeaway [V]
• Despite Massive Ad Spending by Tech Companies, California’s Prop 22 Might Not Win [E]