Statistics Netherlands reports that 29 percent of Dutch households ordered groceries at least once online in 2017, the most in the European Union, passing the UK at 28 percent. Dutch multinational Ahold Delhaize was the first to offer online groceries in the Netherlands, but the practice has kicked into high gear recently due to what ABN Amro analyst Henk Hofstede dubbed the “Picnic Effect.”
ABN Amro estimates Ahold’s market share at 50 percent, followed by Jumbo, which holds 30 percent. Picnic has taken 10 percent market share since its launch three years ago. Picnic received 100 million euro investment last year which it is using to fund a rapid expansion, including opening its first hub in Germany this Summer.
CEO Michiel Muller told Reuters that the company was saving on costs by delivering along regular routes, somewhat like a public bus. Or the “Milkman 2.0”. The milkman of yore was “a very nice guy, very fresh products, always on time, once per day,” Muller said. “We kind of replicated that model, and added technology.”
Michiel Muller said Picnic, which had 150,000 customers at mid-year, can only add 1,000 customers a week against a current waiting list of thousands. Picnic cherry-picks its launches along the most attractive routes. Michiel Muller forecasts Picnic will more than double sales this year to 200 million euros.
Read more about the growth of Picnic on US News.