Sidecar has beaten ride-sharing rivals Uber and Lyft to food delivery in D.C., launching its Sidecar Deliveries program on Wednesday. The service is a partnership with Eat24, the take-out and delivery startup recently bought by Yelp for $134 million. The difference from the usual food delivery is that Sidecar uses the same drivers that give people rides to deliver the food. It’s the sharing economy applied to food delivery basically.
Not that quick delivery by app is new, even in D.C. Amazon does same-day delivery as does Google and Uber tested out a delivery service of a drug store-style list of products. Then there’s Instacart, Postmates and other food-delivery apps. But Sidecar is the first in the District to be a combination of ride-sharing with hot food delivery. It’s also not as wide-spread as some of the other services, with delivery limited to an area with a rough circumfrence of downtown, Columbus Heights, Dupont Circle and the West End.
“Sidecar Deliveries combines people and packages in the same car or on the same route for on-demand delivery,” Sidecar wrote in a blog post about the D.C. launch. “By integrating delivery with ridesharing, we’ve created the fastest, most affordable and scalable delivery service for retailers. Sidecar riders and drivers also benefit from the efficiencies of our people and packages combination: drivers make more money for their time by giving rides to passengers in between delivery stops, and to passengers and packages at the same time when it’s the fastest way for both to reach their destination. DC riders win too, because more drivers on the road means lower wait times and consistently better prices.”
Sidecar Deliveries is now in 11 cities since it launched about five months and has made almost 100,00 deliveries. According to Sidecar, having its delivery service has more than doubled the revenue of the restaurants partnered with Sidecar. We’ll be talking to Sidecar CEO Sunil Paul about Sidecar’s future plans and will have more tomorrow.