NEW YORK -- Cargo, an in-car vending machine provider for ride-hailing services, recently secured an additional $22 million in Series A financing, but this is just the latest in a series of milestones marking Cargo’s steady growth.
To sell items with New York-based Cargo, participating ride-hailing drivers install a small vending machine on top of the center console between the car’s two front seats. This box contains anything from energy drinks and snacks to hangover cures and USB cords.
Drivers receive $1 per order—it was originally 50 cents—and a 25% commission on retail sales. Passengers can purchase items from the box by scanning a QR code or Snapcode, or by visiting cargo.menu on their mobile device to shop. The driver then hands the passenger the purchased items when it is safe to do so.
Since its launch in July 2017, Cargo has put more than 12,000 of its in-car vending machines in ride-hailing vehicles around the country. Cargo claims this means it has more unique “stores” in North America than 7-Eleven, but a center-console vending machine does not a store make.
Semantics aside, the comparison makes it clear that Cargo is attempting to compete directly with c-store breakfast and snack destinations such as 7-Eleven. Click through for more on Cargo’s growth and what it means for convenience retail …
Photograph courtesy of Cargo