Why Jimmy John's 'doesn't trust' third-party delivery apps like Grubhub, Uber Eats

As the food delivery wars heat up with McDonald’s (MCD) ditching UberEats (UBER) in favor of a freshly inked partnership with DoorDash, one famous sandwich chain is refusing to give in to the trend.

“We’re doubling down on our promise. We deliver only five minutes to the store and we refuse to use third party delivery,” Jimmy John’s CEO James North told Yahoo Finance during a recent interview.

“The reason for that is really simple. Our focus on day one has been on the customer and our customer cares about three things,” he said, saying fresh products, attainable pricing and a delivery window between 15-20 minutes are key components to satisfying consumers.

“No one else can do that. We don’t trust a third party to do that. If we do, it adds value, it adds time and that’s not what the customer wants,” North added.

In February, Jimmy John’s was the first chain to declare it would never authorize third-party aggregators such as Uber Eats, DoorDash, and Grubhub to deliver its sandwiches.

Instead, North says Jimmy John’s model consists of carefully-mapped “sandwich delivery zones.” These zones take into account traffic and road patterns to ensure customers remain within five minutes of a store.

Jimmy John’s was the first chain to declare it would never authorize third-party aggregators such as Uber Eats, DoorDash, and Grubhub to deliver its sandwiches

Shake Shack (SHAK) recently doubled down on its nationwide delivery partnership with Grubhub (GRUB) during the company’s earnings call earlier this month, while Pizza Hut (YUM) will be closing over 500 locations in order to further focus on delivery efforts.

But North said he’s not worried about losing out on potential revenue.

“At minimum, a delivery is one sandwich. No one in the industry can do one sandwich delivered under $10 in 15-20 minutes,” he said, adding that customers who live inside his company’s delivery zones learn to trust the brand’s “Freaky Fast, Freaky Fresh” reputation.

“The more they trust us, the more they order. The more they order, the more they share it with their friends and sales go up — that’s our competitive advantage,” he said.

Why Jimmy John’s wants to buy you a house

Jimmy John’s is satisfying customers one sandwich at a time — but what if you don’t live in one of chain’s highly coveted zones?

Well, the sandwich maker might just buy you a house.

Jimmy John’s announced its “Home in the Zone” contest this week, a first-of-its kind competition where a deserving superfan will win a new home within one of Jimmy John’s famous five-minute delivery zones.

“What we’re doing is involving those customers that we can’t get to by allowing them to enter the contest so we can buy them a home and deliver them a sandwich in 15-20 minutes,” North said with a chuckle.

The contest runs now through October 4th.

Alexandra Canal is a Producer at Yahoo Finance.

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