Russian Food Tech Firms Look to Conquer U.S.

Rapid online grocery service Samokat is aiming to launch in New York later this year.


By Adrien Henni, The Moscow Times

Jun 9, 2021


Russian express grocery service Samokat — which was acquired last year by Group and Sber — is aiming to launch in the U.S later this year.


Samokat founder Vyacheslav Bocharov announced the plans at last week’s St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF), after they were first reported by business site The Bell. The company’s U.S. operations are set to operate under the brand name of “Buyk,” Bocharov said.


Samokat is one of a host of fast-growing food tech initiatives that have swept across Russia’s largest cities in recent years. Operating out of so-called “dark stores” — mini warehouses for couriers to ferry orders from — they promise to deliver groceries to city center apartments within 15-30 minutes.


Bocharov said New York City could be the first market covered by Samokat’s U.S. service, with a possible launch as early as this summer. Neither the scale of the project nor the amount of investment being poured into the launch have been revealed, The Bell reported...