A real-time retail grocery delivery service with European roots has big plans to expand across the United States.
Buyk, which made its U.S. debut in September in New York City, has launched in Chicago, with plans of further expansion across various U.S. regions in 2022. The service promises to deliver online and mobile orders of essential food, drink and other necessities in 15 minutes or less, with no minimum spend and no delivery fee.
Similar to two other ultrafast delivery services — Jokr and Gorillas — which launched earlier in 2021, Buyk relies on dark stores for fulfillment. It begins operations in Chicago with six dark stores, bringing the company’s total to 35 stores across both cities. In Chicago the service will initially cover the Wicker Park, Bucktown, Old Irving Park, Ravenswood, Sheffield Neighbors, and Logan Square neighborhoods. Buyk plans to open another 14 dark stores in Chicago by the end the first quarter of 2022.
Buyk said it provides an assortment of supermarket foods, fresh and tasty products from leading international brands. It aims to further expand its in-app offering to include a broad selection of Chicago’s local favorites.
The company is led by restaurant industry veteran James Walker, who joined as CEO in November from Nathan’s Famous, where he served as senior VP, restaurants. He is supported by Buyk founders Rodion Shishkov and Slava Bocharov, the co-founders of Samokat, one of Europe’s fastest-growing ultrafast delivery services and the largest operator of dark stores among on-demand grocers outside of China.
“We hope that unbeatable delivery speed and quality of products become as synonymous with our brand name as deep-dish pizza is with Chicago,” said Walker. “We want to capture this growth momentum and bring this technology not just to big bicoastal metropolises to which so many advancements are limited in the United States. Buyk wants to take instant grocery delivery in the US inland, and our technology, smart unit economics and lean growth strategies will help make this a reality.”
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Buyk raised $46 million from CM Ventures, Fort Ross, Citius and other investors in a funding round ahead of its launch.