Catalan food delivery co-op raises funds to launch app

Mensakas hopes to provide an alternative to gig economy platforms like Deliveroo

Mensakas, the Barcelona-based food delivery co-op founded by former Deliveroo, Glovo and UberEats couriers, has crowdfunded €18,840 (£16,890) to launch its mobile app.

The IOS and Android app will give customers access to range of menus and products provided by the co-op’s partners. The money raised will also be used to pay workers and buy electric vehicles for the delivery fleet.

The co-op was formed as an alternative to the gig economy model of other companies such as Deliveroo, which in the UK recently agreed a six-figure payout to 50 couriers as a the result of legal action.

The riders brought an employment rights claim against the company, arguing that they had been unlawfully denied rights, including the legal minimum wage and paid holiday, after being labelled self-employed contractors.

The Mensakas co-op’s employment model ensures every worker is given an employment contract, with employee rights and tax and social security contributions deducted at source. Their ethos and aim is to allow people to consume in a socially responsible manner, provide decent jobs and contribute towards the development of a social, co-operative economy. 

The co-op received a government grant of €60,000 (£54,000) at the start of the project and launched two crowdfunding campaigns on to raise the additional finance needed to launch the app.

With more than €18,000 raised from 254 donors, Mensakas has exceeded the minimum donation threshold. “It’s a satisfying result which means we now won’t have to ask for loan funding,” said founder member Dani Gutiérrez.

Once launched, the app will cover deliveries in the Ciutat Vella, Gràcia, Eixample and Sants areas of Barcelona, ​​with the radius of operations expected to expand to other districts and cities.

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