The timing couldn’t be better for a food delivery service as the coronavirus pandemic has shuttered restaurants and the demand for prepared meals is exploding.
As remote work increases of the COVID-19 crisis, Uber Eats launched its food delivery service for business globally on Wednesday (April 8), according to a report in VentureBeat.
The expansion of Uber for Business comes after a pilot version of the service debuted in 2018 by the division of San Francisco-based Uber Technology Inc. The firm decided to speed the global launch due to increased demand last month when businesses began having employees work from home. It is expected to be made available in the U.K., Canada, France, and Brazil. The company plans to expand the service to more than 20 markets throughout 2020, the news outlet reported.
“We’ve made this move to respond to a surge of interest from companies looking to support employees who are working from home or who have limited food options on the road or in the field,” said Ronnie Gurion, Uber’s global head of business. “In addition to supporting employee productivity and social distancing, this expansion is seeking to help broaden the delivery marketplace for restaurants partnered with Uber Eats and ensure that they have access to higher volume, repeat orders.”
The service comes as demand has skyrocketed. Uber said it experienced a 28 percent increase in Uber Eats requests from its Uber for Business customers who used the app between February and March.
That’s good news for Uber since demand for its ride-sharing services has plummeted as people across the country are being urged to stay home.
Still, the news isn’t all good.
In February, 240 Uber users in Mexico had their accounts suspended amid concerns over the coronavirus contamination.
“The Uber customers suspended were confirmed to have traveled with two Uber drivers who came into contact with a possible coronavirus case,” the company posted to its Uber’s Mexican Twitter account.