Rapid grocery delivery firm Gorillas has opened a coffee shop within the confines of one of its dark stores in London.
The coffee shop, which is located in Hampstead, offers customers the space to click-and-collect grocery orders made on the app instead of having them delivered.
It will be operated by social enterprise Change Please and staffed by homeless people who are paid the London living wage and provided full barista training.
All of the profits from the shop’s sales are donated straight back to the charity.
Gorillas said that repurposing the unused area of the dark store “maximises the retail space.”
“It’s another example of Gorillas’ commitment to adding value to local high streets, repurposing shuttered stores around the capital, while also exploring partnerships which benefit local communities,” a company spokesperson told The Grocer.
The Berlin-based firm is no stranger to quirky business moves after launching a record label back in February.
Analysts and experts have questioned the benefit of opening up the dark store to the public.
Jiffy former head of delivery operations and quick commerce consultant Quaid Combstock said: “I find the idea to be quite laughable.
“If dark stores allow customers to enter, they’re no longer a dark store. The entire point of a dark store or kitchen is that it is not open to customers. Once you allow customers in, you just revert back to being a traditional retail store with a delivery component – which is far from new,” he added.