Drizly was founded in 2012 with a simple goal in mind to deliver beer, wine and spirits via local alcohol retailers. Rather than building a bricks and mortar store Drizly built an ecommerce platform and established relationships with more than 3,000 largely independent established retailers across the country to deliver alcohol legally to people over the age of 21. The Drizly smartphone and desktop application were built to be simple, easy and fun to use.
Now throw in the 2020 Covid-19 pandemic, lockdowns and the closing of restaurants, bars and distilleries across the country and it created the perfect opportunity for a company that was built for ecommerce orders and delivery of beer, wine and spirits to consumers homes with minimal contact. Another key feature of the Drizly app is near instant gratification. Once a customer places an order on the app beer, wine and spirits are delivered not in day but in minutes. Customers get their orders delivered from their local retailer to their home or office in 60 minutes or less.
Covid-19 Transformed Not Just Attitudes but Habits
As people were locked down for the majority of 2020 they got used to placing orders for alcohol online and orders for spirits have skyrocketed. Over the last eight years Drizly has built up years piles of sales data and deep insights derived from their independent retailers on its platform in 1,400-plus cities, along with over 2 million, directly addressable consumers of legal drinking age in its database. Similar to the way that Amazon changed consumer’s hard good shopping habits, Drizly hopes to do the same thing when it comes to adult beverages.
Online Ordering and Delivery Habits Changed Forever in 2020
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The pace of changing habits has accelerated and now according to Drizly 72% of their current customers and 50% of non-Drizly users anticipate at least 50% of their alcohol shopping will take place online vs. in store in the next year.
Drizly’s business concept, execution of their plans and the outlook for alcohol ecommerce was recognized as Uber Technologies, Inc. and Drizly have announced an agreement for Uber to acquire Drizly for approximately $1.1 billion in stock and cash for this hot company.
After the completion of the transaction, Drizly will become a wholly owned subsidiary of Uber. Drizly’s marketplace will eventually be integrated with the Uber Eats app, while also maintaining a separate Drizly app.
Drizly plans to innovate and expand independently in its fast-growing and competitive sector, while also gaining access to the advanced mobile marketplace technologies of the world’s largest food delivery and ridesharing platform. Merchants on Drizly will be able to benefit from Uber’s best-in-class routing technology and significant consumer base. Delivery drivers will have even more ways to earn. And Uber’s rewards and subscription programs will be able to deliver even greater value to consumers with new benefits and perks on Drizly.
“Wherever you want to go and whatever you need to get, our goal at Uber is to make people’s lives a little bit easier. That’s why we’ve been branching into new categories like groceries, prescriptions and, now, alcohol,” said Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi.
“Cory and his amazing team have built Drizly into an incredible success story, profitably growing gross bookings more than 300 percent year-over-year. By bringing Drizly into the Uber family, we can accelerate that trajectory by exposing Drizly to the Uber audience and expanding its geographic presence into our global footprint in the years ahea.”
“Drizly has spent the last 8 years building the infrastructure, technology, and partnerships to bring the consumer a shopping experience they deserve. It’s a proud day for the Drizly team as we recognize what we’ve accomplished to date but also with the humility that much remains to be done to fulfill our vision,” said Drizly co-founder and CEO Cory Rellas.
“With this in mind, we are thrilled to join a world-class Uber team whose platform will accelerate Drizly on its mission to be there when it matters—committed to life’s moments and the people who create them.”
Uber currently anticipates that more than 90 percent of the consideration to be paid to the Drizly stockholders in the transaction will consist of shares of Uber common stock, with the balance to be paid in cash. The acquisition is subject to regulatory approval and other customary closing conditions and is expected to close within the first half of 2021.