La Belle Vie is a French startup that is aiming to compete with Amazon’s grocery delivery service in Paris, by being better at food. Think of Amazon as the large, faceless supermarket that you begrudgingly purchase your bits and pieces from, and La Belle Vie as the charming local grocer that barely exists anymore.
In a way, La Belle Vie is aiming to bring the charm and effortless sophistication of a local grocer to the online market. They are picking the right target; starting with Paris, and eventually moving to Lyon, La Belle Vie will aim to educate customers that purchasing food online doesn’t have to be only about convenience. By taking the original model – Amazon delivers from its own warehouses, while other competitors pick up the groceries from local stores – and improving it to include fine foods, the business will be attempting to find the sweet spot between high-end users, and average consumers who are starved for time. La Belle Vie has also recently acquired a frozen meal start-up and will offer its own branded frozen meals as part of the offering.
This is an elegant solution to a frustration that many have experienced since grocery delivery began; not being able to sample the goods, and hoping that the delivery person knows what you like. La Belle Vie is making taste part of its brand, working to create an element of trust between the company and consumers that means purchasing from the website is a mark of good taste.
The proof will be in the product itself. A discerning and fickle Paris audience will be quick to determine whether La Belle Vie is better than the alternatives – most notably Amazon – and if that improvement is enough to make the change. Hopefully, this is a move that works in order to create a boutique industry within the Amazon dominated online grocery sector.