German yoghurt maker MÃ¼ller creates farm delivery service in a potential challenge for Ocado.
Milk & More will become a stand-alone business in February with the aim of driving growth following a pandemic sales increase. The parent company Theo MÃ¼ller Group will remain its main shareholder.
Milk & More was originally part of Dairy Crest, operating as a milk delivery service, but was acquired by MÃ¼ller in 2016 and has since returned to profitability.
It now delivers artisanal products from small suppliers to over 400,000 homes across the UK using its electric fleet, which is one of the largest in the country.
Patrick MÃ¼ller, managing director of Milk & More, said it was possible to start making more deals with larger stores, positioning the company for a battle with market leader Ocado, which has partnered up at M&S ââand Morrisons.
Mr MÃ¼ller, who is not related to the MÃ¼ller family, said: âWe have a large fleet of vehicles, so it would make perfect sense to determine who wants efficient delivery. We’re looking for more partners – they could be food companies, flower companies, whatever.
He added, âThe new legal entity will create a more agile e-commerce focused business in the home delivery market. “
This follows an increase in sales since the Covid coup, with revenues up 20% since 2019. The number of online customers is now two-thirds higher than in 2019.
The company currently offers what it calls âdoorstep magic,â where people can order until 9 p.m. at night and get items by 7 a.m. the next morning.
Milk & More has already started partnering to use its delivery fleet after these morning deliveries – for example, partnering with nurseries and schools to deliver milk after its deliveries are complete to UK homes.
The push to accelerate Milk & More’s growth comes just weeks after the grocery delivery industry was rocked by the collapse of the online grocery service Farmdrop, which was backed by entrepreneur Alex Chesterman and the Duke of Westminster.
The demise of the company, which had struggled to find new capital at a time when “growth in orders and sales [had] didn’t translate into profitability, âultimately led customers to scramble to get turkeys in time for Christmas.