Postmates has added 1,000 more cities to its delivery radius. As reported by Fortune this morning, that brings the total number of cities in which the delivery service operates to 3,500 — which covers more than 70 percent of U.S. households.
The news comes just as the San Francisco-based company prepares for an IPO, which it filed for confidentially this past February.
Prior to that, in September 2018, Postmates raised $300 million in a round led by Tiger Capital, then followed that funding up in January of 2019 by grabbing an additional $100 million in equity funding. The latter investment, also led by Tiger Capital, pushed Postmates’ valuation up to a sizeable $1.85 billion.
Outside the numbers, the company has debuted its own adorable delivery robot and launched Postmates Party, which lets users pool their orders and in doing so skip delivery fees. According to the Fortune article, Party now accounts for 12 percent of Postmates orders.
The company still has its work cut out, though, in terms of competing with its chief rivals. While Postmates can and will deliver everything from wine to Advil to customers, it’s best known these days as a restaurant delivery company. In that realm, it has to contend with giants like Uber Eats, who’s valued at $100 billion ahead of its own IPO, and DoorDash, currently valued at $7.1 billion.
According to Fortune, Postmates’ latest expansion is chiefly focused on smaller cities like Santa Cruz and Park City, UT, where the company “thinks it can become one of the top services because there is little competition.”
That could well be a smart strategic move for Postmates at this point. Back in December, we predicted these so-called second-tier U.S. cities would be the next battleground for delivery. There are some smaller companies already at work in these places, the Waitr-Bite Squad duo being most notable among them. But from what we can see so far, it looks as if Postmates is targeting areas that even these companies have yet to tackle. And with markets like San Francisco and NYC already saturated, getting into these smaller, underserved markets could give Postmates a much-needed advantage in those places ahead of its IPO.