In the past two years, Japan’s Quick-Commerce (Q-Commerce) landscape has been a true rollercoaster. With many new players jumping in and out of the market, Japan’s on-demand delivery sector has experienced a high degree of instability.
If you’re unfamiliar with the term, Q-commerce is essentially e-commerce, but with a greater focus on speed. Initially limited to food delivery, it quickly expanded to include other categories such as groceries, medicines, gifts, apparel, and more. Speed is the defining characteristic of this new form of delivery, where minutes, and sometimes even seconds, can make the difference between winning or losing against your competitors.
Data indicates that Q-Commerce in Japan is a growing market, with revenue projected to increase from $2.69 billion to $5.23 billion by 2027, and a total user base exceeding 21 million. However, in 2022 alone, three major Q-commerce players—Foodpanda, Wolt Market, and QuickGet—announced the discontinuation of their services in Japan. Additionally, on March 10th, the South Korean delivery service Coupang decided to withdraw from the Japanese market after only a few months of operation.
The reasons for these withdrawals cannot be solely attributed to a decline in delivery demand in the post-Covid-19 market. Japan’s unique regulations and business practices appear to be the main obstacles hindering the growth of Q-Commerce in the country. On the other hand, the Q-Commerce platform OniGO is exhibiting signs of rapid growth. Its secret? A close partnership with retailers.