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UrbanSherpa climbs into crowdfunding

On-demand delivery start-up UrbanSherpa has launched an equity crowdfunding campaign as it seeks to expand beyond Auckland.

The service, which purchases, picks up and delivers – usually within the hour – takeaways, groceries and shopping throughout the Auckland CBD and inner suburbs, successfully raised $750,000 in February.

Now UrbanSherpas, which says 3500 Aucklanders and 20 businesses have signed up for the $12 service, is aiming to raise $750,000 via Snowball Effect to expand to other main centres.

Brian Dewil, says the internet, and smartphones in particular, have helped create an on-demand economy where online shoppers want it now.

“Our unique blend of Uber-style smartphone app, attractive pricing and can-do attitude has really struck a chord with Auckland shoppers and retailers,” Dewil says.

“Now that we’ve established a base camp of sorts, we need to push on and to do that, we need more capital.”

Dewil says the immediate goal is to hire more UrbanSherpas and expand the company’s footprint in Auckland, before heading to Wellington and Christchurch.

“Allied to this is significant marketing investment to drive user acquisition and new merchant partnerships,” he adds.

“Finally, we need to keep advancing our app and back-end technology platform to improve the user experience and allow integration with our merchant partners’ e-commerce systems to provide a seamless experience for all.”

The company plans to establish exclusive partnerships with retailers and other businesses to provide one-hour delivery by bicycle, car or van. So far the company has signed deals with 20 businesses, including Burger Wisconsin, Mexicali Fresh, Nosh, Dunkin Donuts, Frucor and, which represents more than 500 restaurants nationwide.