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Russia's Yandex to Launch Rapid Delivery in France

Yandex bicycle courier in Moscow. Andrei Nikerichev / Moskva News Agency

Russian tech giant Yandex said Thursday it plans to launch its rapid grocery delivery service in France later this year and is also gearing up to start operations in London.

Since the start of the coronavirus pandemic demand for online grocery deliveries has spiked, buttressing 15-minute grocery delivery services such as Yandex.Lavka.

Yandex.Lavka currently operates in several big Russian cities as well as Tel Aviv.

The company said the service would start operating in Paris in the second quarter of this year.

"Last week we registered a local company in France under the name Deli International and started hiring," a Yandex spokeswoman told AFP.

In France, the service will initially cover the central districts of Paris. 

The company also plans to launch operations in London. 

Yandex, which also has restaurant food delivery and taxi services, relies on an army of bicycle couriers and multiple warehouses known as "dark stores." 

The widespread network of small warehouses closed to the public allows for delivery to take place within 10-15 minutes of placing an order.

Yandex, nicknamed the "Russian Google," is already present in some European countries, such as Finland and the Baltic states, mainly with its taxi service. 

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