The birth and evolution of Frichti: the story of a constant transformation to satisfy a forever more demanding consumer
Quick Commerce and FoodTech
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Frichti was created in France in 2015 by two young entrepeneurs who wanted to invest in the quick delivery foodtech.
The company’s core business model is to elaborate and deliver meals at home in a short period of time. The service they started offering was to carry out the preparation of healthy dishes using organic and seasonal products, at an affordable price, that arrive at the consumer’s door in a maximum period of half an hour.
The audience Frichti targets is active, busy and health-conscious, who choose to eat healthily but conveniently during the working week.
Surfing on the trend of home delivery while twisting its offer to the habits of healthy and busy urban people
Frichti had business concept was indeed revolutionary. The Frichti team did not have any physical shops or restaurants, but they did, however, implement the “dark stores” – “dark kitchen” at the time – concept, which consisted of creating warehouses with all the products needed to prepare the menus, which would then be delivered to the consumers.
The creators of Frichti developed an app through which consumers could order and pay for the menu of the day that was most convenient for them.
The project started to gain recognition as customers began to see that the format and process of ordering and picking up their meals was indeed efficient. So, the company continued to grow, evolve, and adapt to the needs of the market throughout the months. The offer adapts to the fast pace of today’s urban environment.
In a market as competitive as the food delivery, with the growing position of quick commerce, it is important for brands to differentiate themselves from the competition. Frichti’s added value in its early days was that its products were healthy, affordable and delivered in a short time.
Frichti transforms itself from home delivery to quick market shopping
In 2018, when the company was starting to become relatively established in the market, it began to diversify its offer by making non-cooked products available to customers. Frichti became an online « fresh poroducts’market » to which customers could access.
Consumers could order products online via the app and have them delivered to their doorstep in less than half an hour. Frichti attributes part of the success of the “supermarket” product range to the effectiveness of their dark stores.
The company faced unprecedented growth: advantages of being a 100% digital player
The arrival of the COVID-19 crisis meant that both the purchasing process and the way of consuming entertainment changed radically. It all came down to online consumption; both shopping and entertainment went digital.
Many companies were affected by this crisis and others had to adapt. However, Frichti, which had been doing business online from the beginning, only grew exponentially when the 1st lockdown knocked on France’s door. According to Frichti’s director, Julia Bijaoui, since the outbreak of the pandemic and in the six months following it, the company has grown by 300% financially speaking.
Noting its growth, Frichti decided to expand, this time also geographically, and set up delivery points in Lyon, Bordeaux and Lille.
The quick commerce is no longer a competitive advantage for the brand but a growing market
The arrival of the pandemic turned traditional commerce into digital commerce, and although we are now in a less alarming situation with regard to the health crisis, digital consumption, and especially the consumption of food delivery platforms has skyrocketed and became fully established in our daily lives.
As a consequence, the number of food delivery platforms has only multiplied; and remaining different from the competition has become more complicated than ever.
Frichti has always been faithful to its market philosophy, which stands for a sustainable business practice, for an “ultra-convenient” solution, to address the needs of a healthy and active consumer. Nonetheless, to reinforce its presence in the market, the brand launched a private label in September 2021 to offer its own quality products at lower prices.
In addition, the company has created a space in its app, called “Kits recettes”, in which healthy dishes are displayed, as well as a step-by-step explanation for the preparation process so that consumers can also elaborate recipes using Frichti products. This kind of action enables Frichti to get closer to the consumer and generating loyalty. In this way, added value is created and a clear reaction to the massive competition is implemented.
What can we anticipate as model transformations for Frichti in the coming months and years?
What is coming is, in fact, happening. Last March, Gorillas, a German Quick Commerce giant that was created less than two years ago and has expanded with at an extraordinary speed, signed the acquisition of Frichti.
This union means that together, both players will be the most powerful in the field of instant food distribution in the country.
In this way, both companies are moving out of their comfort zones, diversifying and growing. Gorillas will have to adapt and learn the process of preparing and distributing weekly menus, and Frichti will have the challenge of introducing its business and know-how in countries outside France.
With this example, what we observe is that the main objective of companies is to grow and not to be left behind, it is the spirit of innovation and the predisposition to go out of their comfort zone that makes brands move forward. Looking at Frichti’s journey, from its birth it has always been one step ahead of its competition, and continues to do so.
If the brand expands globally, its main challenge will be to understand new consumers’ habits, so to remain customer centric at all costs.
Why is it interesting?
Today, a successful business model can be or must be an agile business model!
Frichti is a clear example of how today’s companies are constantly transforming their models to improve their customer offering and stand out from the competition. Frichti has so far remained true to its values and succeed in delivering healthy food as quickly as possible to its consumers.
The Frichti case is interesting because we can perceive the main drivers that allowed such a young company to reach such a high level in no time, while some other players have been left behind.
There will be countless ways to success, but of course, observing the market and consumers around you, analysing the competition, willing to innovate and taking risks, and staying ahead of others, have worked well for the French company.
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