Keoghs Insight


Ryan Beeley

The home delivery service boom

Food for Thought Winter 18-19

A claims persepective 

Over the past few years we have seen an unprecedented increase in the number of takeaway food options available to us from the comfort of our own homes. The success of companies such as Deliveroo and UberEats has seen the traditional takeaway, whether that be the local Chinese restaurant or pizza parlour, evolve to a point where we are now ordering gourmet food - and in some cases Michelin star meals - at the click of a  button.

Of course, there is varied opinion within the industry as to whether this evolution has been positive or negative, but what impact could a home delivery service have on your business from a claims perspective

The facts

We currently live in an age driven by technology and convenience. This has allowed home delivery services to thrive and capitalise on an increase in demand for ready-to-eat quality meals made available instantly. Figures from analysts, NPD Group, state that the takeaway delivery market has grown 73% over the past 10 years. Forecasts suggest that it will continue to grow a further 17% over the next two years, making it a £5bn industry.

With continued growth expected within the market, it is important for businesses utilising the various home delivery services now available to be aware of the types of claims they could be at risk of receiving.

The claims

Clearly, the very essence of the home delivery service – food being delivered to your home – creates more traffic on the roads. This will undoubtedly lead to an increase in road traffic accidents within theindustry, particularly given some services choose to carry out their deliveries by bicycle or motorcycle. Some businesses have chosen to insure their delivery drivers, but even so, it is vital to consider the impact a potentially serious road traffic accident involving a delivery driver could have on your brand.

Similarly, whilst an assault on a delivery driver may not have a direct effect on a company, it could have a negative effect on the brand. It is therefore important when considering the usage of such a service, to ensure brand protection is considered at all times.

Businesses must also bear in mind the possibility of food becoming contaminated in transit, thus putting the business at risk of a food poisoning claim. Not only could this affect a company directly in terms of increased pressure on their bottom line, but again, there could be severe consequences for a brand that has received a number of food poisoning claims.

In turn, this could lead to a decline in customer retention which is now asimportant as ever given the industry’s vast growth. It is vital to bear this in mind when considering whether to delve into the home delivery service market as, of course, businesses have no control over the food once it has left their premises.

All doom and gloom?

In many ways far from it. The rapid evolution and advance of technology in this sector and the emergence of home delivery services has not only widened the scope of options available to the consumer, but has also allowed and aided independent, smaller restaurants and cafes to grow their business by giving them access to a much larger target market.

Maintaining a positive claims portfolio and placing emphasis on brand protection at all times will simply ensure that businesses continue on an upward trajectory.