Mayd, a Berlin-based startup building an on-demand drug delivery platform in Europe, quickly followed a large seed hike last fall, with a € 30 million Series A funding round (~ $ 34 million) led by US investor Lightspeed Venture Partners.
Previous investors Target Global, 468 Capital and Earlybird Venture Capital also participated in Series A.
The round brings Mayd’s total raised to date, since the company was founded in early 2021, to € 43 million.
This initial funding speed seems similar to the pace at which investor money has flown into European on-demand grocery delivery platforms since app-based delivery supercharged the pandemic.
Grocery delivery startups have continued to reap some very robust B and C hikes in recent years, such as the nearly $ 1 billion Series C for the Berlin Gorillas in October. So it will be interesting to see if investors feel pressured to spend equally intoxicating sums on more specialized on-demand startups, as the founders work to cut and cut opportunities around app-based orders and fast local delivery. (See also, for example, the $ 20 million Series A raise earlier this month for another German “instant delivery” startup that focuses on premium branded products.)
For now, however, Mayd holds schtum on his assessment.
The demand for medicines and / or non-prescription products sold in pharmacies – which Mayd’s platform was designed to deliver quickly – is universal enough, if not quite up to the daily human need to eat. So investors are likely drawn to the prospect of solid demand, assuming the execution is strong.
That said, grocery as a category is not purely food; there are products overlapping what you can find in a pharmacy, so there is direct inventory competition here, although prescription medicines (which will come to Mayd) are a specialist order type that is typically not possible through an “instant food delivery”.
Additionally, the convenience of in-app ordering and drug home delivery can offer a greater advantage over generic food delivery, as it is disproportionate for pharmacy customers to feel sick or care for someone who is sick. , so they may be particularly interested in avoiding leaving the house to make an essential purchase.
Mayd’s delivery commitment in the cities where it operates is to bring the order to your home within 30 minutes, for orders placed between 8:00 am and midnight (next day delivery).
It quickly expanded from its first city, Berlin, and also launched in Hamburg, Munich, Frankfurt am Main, Cologne and D.Düsseldorf. Through this imprint he currently offers access to over 2,000 non-prescription medicines and other pharmaceutical products, ahead of changes to the e-prescription system this month that will allow him to take orders for prescription drugs in Germany as well.
This pace of expansion means that the startup has already grown to over 100 employees, as well as over 350 delivery workers, who are said to be “on permanent contract” (this means “direct contract” with Mayd, i.e. not employed through subcontractors).
The Series A funds will be used to further intensify growth gas, with Mayd aiming to expand into two more European markets in the new months and scoring more cities.
“We will use the new funds to invest in expanding the company in Germany and Europe, taking key positions focused on technology, as well as further increasing operations,” says TechCrunch. “We plan to launch in two more markets in Europe until the end of the second quarter and are currently examining our best options.”
The startup says typical customers for its pharmacy order delivery service so far skew women more than men and tend to fall into the 35-45 age group, focusing on “convenience first.” (Alias: “Our customer base is urban, digital and highly appreciates our 24/7 service.”)
Mayd also says his shoppers are calling larger basket sizes than online groceries.
But, well, ailment medicines and potions tend to be relatively expensive compared to general groceries, so that’s not too surprising. However, it’s important to get the unit economy stacked up for quick delivery.
“Ailments against the common cold, OTC products for acute health problems such as dry eyes are in great demand. In addition to all this, it is popular with our customers for the needs of mothers and babies, “she adds.
Mayd says he takes a commission on sales of non-prescription pharmaceuticals but charges no delivery charges.
For electronic prescription orders it has been stated that the template will incur a delivery fee or an insertion fee. To update: Mayd confirmed that there will be no consumer charge on e-prescriptions, rather the model he is going with is to impose a platform fee on pharmacies.
Asked about the upcoming launch of e-prescriptions in Germany, Mayd says it will be “the first company on the market to integrate instant delivery service into our system”, adding: “This way we will be able to fully cover all requirements in the health area. Customers will have the ability to order their prescription drugs in an instant, cost-effective and time-saving “.
Looking ahead, the startup says it expects to move 100,000 customers over the course of this year as it expands from (currently) six cities – soon seven, as dial-up service in Stuttgart next week – to more than 50 cities in its entire operational footprint in the first half of 2022.