The recent expansion of food delivery service Deliveroo is another example in a growing list of App-based businesses that have used London as a testing ground before moving into regional cities – Uber, Just Eat and Open Table to name a few. These are all fast-growing businesses, attracting eye-watering valuations (Uber being valued at almost €45bn at the last investment round). London is naturally the first place you would want to launch as an App, with almost 8.5 million potential users to go at, but it is also a highly competitive region in which to have your App noticed. It is probably for this reason that we see Apps moving quickly from being London-centric to expanding into other major cities across the UK.
Apps like Uber and Just Eat are demonstrating how much e-commerce is actually moving to the mobile space (tablet or smartphone) and causing real disruption to more traditional methods of service (who wants to queue at a taxi rank, really?). In fact, mobile e-commerce is expected to grow to almost €1.3tn in 2015! Now, many of us will question the €billions of paper valuations being placed on these businesses but they are a constant reminder that any businesses ignoring mobile will quickly become obsolete.
Now, if anyone who works for YPlan is reading this – please launch outside of London soon! It is perfect for last-minute organisers like me!