Yep! , a multi-format alcohol service, today announced its launch in London. The platfo rm features personal AI-based recommendations and predictive stock supply.
Yep! is the first online platform in the UK to sell and deliver alcohol based on personal recommendations and offer over 1 500 craft beers and wines from exclusive local producers. All items are available in the mobile app for purchase and delivery or instant pickup. Orders can also be placed through a touchscreen display right in the offline store and received a minute later.
The platform uses machine learning algorithms to analyse the users’ preferences and offer every customer personal recommendations on specific beers and wines. By creating a “taste profile” of a client, the app solves the problem of making the right choice, which is inevitable when it comes to unfamiliar brands.
AI is also responsible for filling the stock based on the preferences of customers from a particular neighbourhood. Predictive stock supply allows to offer the clients from a specific area exactly what they want without the need for huge storage facilities.
Yep! is devoted to working with smaller wine and beer producers, buying 70% of its stock directly from breweries and wineries and only 30% — from distributors. The company currently has over 100 contracts with dedicated local producers and several deals with distributors of wine and beer from Europe.
Big alcohol brands are actually far outnumbered in the market by independent local producers. Last year alone, small breweries from all over the world produced over 715 thousand new craft beers, a significant part of which came from the UK. The European wine industry is also heavily represented by smaller producers — in 2020, 83% of the 2.2 million vineyards in the EU were under one hectare.
“Limited production allows such players to focus on the quality and unique features of the product, as well as regularly bring new items to the market,” said Alex Lukunetes, CEO and co-founder of Yep!. “The problem is that retail outlets, including dark stores and rapid delivery services, simply can’t afford to sell unknown brands from small producers due to limited shelf space and/or the inability of those producers to supply sufficient volumes of products. We’ve created a service that solves this problem.”
“Online stores offering alcohol can potentially work with small producers, but are not able to provide customers with instant access to their products due to long delivery times — usually from one to several days,” added Alex Danilov, co-founder of Yep!. “They also lack the necessary offline infrastructure to offer a wide range of products available for pickup right after the order has been placed. We are in a unique position to offer clients simple and quick access to exclusive brands, both offline — in smart pickup stores, and online — with fast delivery in the areas of our presence.”
Focus on alcohol gives the project a higher margin compared to other grocery delivery services, where beer and wine are only part of the offer: Yep!’s margin reaches 35-45% instead of 15-20% for competitors. A multi-format approach that combines delivery and pickup also reduces logistics costs.
The company have already got £350,000 investment from private investors and are currently raising a £1.5 million seed round to open 3 new locations and a distribution centre in London, as well as hire top talent for development and marketing teams. Further on, the company is planning to open another 40 pickup stores and expand its business to Germany.
About the founders
Alex Lukunetes, CEO and co-founder of Yep!, is a serial entrepreneur who has been launching new projects for over 15 years, including a chain of craft beer stores with annual revenues of over $5 million.
Alex Danilov, CPO and co-founder of Yep!, has been responsible for multiple businesses in retail, e-commerce, foodtech and software development over the last 15 years.