Online-Supermarkt Picnic launched in Germany 

Note:  an overview of all the latest developments within the German online groceries market, can be found in our quarterly report 

A new competitor for Amazon Fresh and REWE: the online supermarket Picnic recently launched  in a few German cities. Shoppers order their groceries with an app, the delivery is for free. 

Dutch grocery delivery service Picnic recently launched in Germany. It starts off in the North Rhine-Westphalia region in cities like Kaarst, Neuss, Meerbusch and Düsseldorf-Oberkassel. Other cities will follow soon according to the company’s management. The Picnic services are already used by 80,000 consumers in the Netherlands, according to the company.  In the end Picnic wants to deliver to all consumers, not just those in cities. Before their launch, a pilot was held in the city of Kaarst.

Free delivery by electric delivery van

The customers can order the groceries whenever they want - including freshly baked breads and pastry, fruits and vegetables - in the app and get their groceries delivered at their doorstep. Picnic aims to deliver within a 20 minute time slot - for comparison: time slots at competing stores are 2 hours.

Not a taxi service

Shoppers can however not pick an exact time-slot themselves. “We don’t work like a taxi operating service where every customer is driven to individually, but more like a bus service with a driving plan”, explains founder Michiel Muller

Next day delivery

Customers who order before 10 pm, get their groceries delivered the next day. The orders are sent to suppliers in the evening, who bring it to the Picnic warehouses the next morning. From there, the carts are delivered to distributor hubs, where they are awaited by the Picnic deliverers.  


Picnic delivers with the help of electric vehicles. The app has a track and trace option, that enables to follow the drivers in real time. The delivery is free of charge, but there is a minimum order size of 25 euros. Picnic guarantees their customers the lowest price in the German market.  In order to be able to make the deliveries, Picnic is currently setting up a fleet of electric vans themselves, that follow algorithms to drive the most efficient routes, 

Milk men

The results are precision and sustainability: with their logistics, Picnic aims to optimize efficiency and to reduce waste. Picnic will also take in returnable bottles and packagings. The electric vans will mostly be driven by students, who will make rounds like milkmen used to do. Picnic calls them their “runners”.   

100 million euros for expansion

The online supermarket was founded in 2015 in the Netherlands. In 2017 the founders gathered 100 million euros for their expansion. The company aims to generate 300 millions euros revenue in the year to come. 

In the North Rhine-Westphalia region, it will mainly compete with the REWE delivery service. Amazon Fresh is also active in Germany, but for the time being they focus on Berlin, Hamburg and Munich.