Illustration by Celia Díaz.
Keywords for the future of the industry according to Germán Duarte, UberEats’ Director: virtual restaurants, data, machine learning, personalization, healthy food and plant-based.
Hyper convenience and technology: the on-demand concept for all aspects of postmodern life:
“I’m at home listening to my Discover Weekly on Spotify, then I’ll check what’s new on Tinder or Netflix and order dinner on UberEats.” The previous sentence is common in the daily lives of urban youth, on a global scale. This type of consumer has access to a debit or credit card and a cellphone. According to the Mexican Government, young people between 12 and 20 years of age represent 31% of the population and 90% of these people have a smartphone. As a brand, being part of the digital universe is essential. In Mexico’s case, only 44% of the population in Mexico have bank accounts, and 92% of those prefer to pay in cash – according to the National Report on Financial Inclusion.
Time as a luxury that must be saved:
The word “convenience” is mainly associated with satisfying the needs of today’s consumers: hyper-connected and hyper-busy. Today we can find on-demand services for everything: laundry, supermarkets, dog walks, beauty salons, home cleaning services and dating. This new vision of time as a luxury creates a money-time-simplicity transaction. Nowadays, home delivery apps like Amazon, Rappi, UberEats or Cornershop are improving and growing in the market. According to the international bank UBS, the food delivery industry will have a value of $ 365 billion dollars globally by 2030. Alsea in Mexico announced that it will launch an app in Mexico for delivery service of its brands. The challenge for brands of the food and beverage industry, is to think on how to extend the experience of their establishment to the homes of their consumers and remain differentiated: from packaging to the portability of the food.
UberEats, one of the greats in the playing field:
Germán Pérez-Duarte, UberEats Commercial Director for Latin America, shared his vision of the future regarding delivery and how the platform is opening up access to brands and gastronomies to more than 75 million users.
What is the future of delivery platforms?
We’ll see more and more virtual restaurants. We’ll continue investing in technology for restaurants via POS integration with the intention of streamlining their operations with our feedback and data-based insights. For consumers, there will be personalized recommendations of dishes and restaurants thanks to machine learning, and the increase in delivery as a convenience of their daily life.
What hours of the day are trending for deliveries?
Ordering food via app is growing, UberEats is now helping restaurants to unlock the demand in hours of less activity. While some restaurants have usually only been busy at lunch and/or dinner; now they have demand in new times of the day.
What kind of gastronomies are the most requested and what direction will they start growing?
In terms of gastronomic trends, we recently analyzed the data in Latin America from more than 20 million searches in the last 6 months (from May to November 2018) to reveal what and how Latinos ate during the past year.
1. Healthy: Consumers seek convenience, healthier and more tasty options such as salads, juices or superfoods like matcha, acai and chia.
The search volumes of diners also show that food delivery applications like UberEats are quickly turning into what was once known as cheat meals over the weekend, an increasingly important part of our daily eating habits. During 2019 we hope to see users looking for increasingly cheaper and healthier meal options on a daily basis. As people become more aware of what they eat, we can expect that plant-based or plant-based superfoods continue to rise in popularity.
2. Back to Latin flavor: typical cravings such as empanadas, arepas, coxinha, feijoada, ceviche and mofongo were very popular, as well as ingredients such as banana or avocado. The most popular regional cuisines this year were Venezuelan, Brazilian and Peruvian.
3. Raw fish: call it poke, tuna and raw salmon, sushi or temaki, diners are hungrier than ever for raw seafood.
4. Middle Eastern food: hummus, shawarma, kibbe, kebab and sfiha are desired by vegetarians and omnivores as well.
5. Comfort food and desserts: while consumers are interested in health and well-being, they also look for those dishes that give them ‘comfort’. This means soup, ice cream, sandwiches and cakes. 2018 was also the year of the ‘Milanese’, the dish that figured among the 10 most coveted foods in Latin America. As its name says, the Milanese originally comes from Milan, but was taken to the Southern Cone (mainly Argentina and Uruguay) by Italian immigrants.
Some relevant data:
- UberEats operates in more than 350 markets in 35 countries, all this in just under 3 years.
- It works with 160,000 restaurants globally, compared to 80,000 in February 2018.
- The average time to receive orders is less than 31 minutes.
- UberEats is the # 1 application for Food and Beverages in the App Store. (Data from the US App Store, as of June 2018)
- In two years, UberEats has expanded to more than 80 cities in 14 countries: Mexico, Dominican Republic, Costa Rica, Panama, Ecuador, Colombia, Ecuador, Guatemala, Peru, Chile, Uruguay, Brazil, Puerto Rico, El Salvador, Argentina .
- In Mexico, UberEats operates since 2016 and already has a presence in 30 cities of the republic.
*Our specialty is the Food & Beverage (F&B) industry.