- Instant needs delivery company Gorillas has named Luanne Calvert, a veteran marketing executive with experience at high-profile retail and technology companies, as chief marketing officer, according to a Tuesday press release.
- Calvert, who will lead Gorillas' global marketing staff and sit on the German startup's management board, will report to founder and CEO Kağan Sümer.
- Gorillas is looking to fashion a global brand as competition rises in the fast-growing ultrafast delivery space.
Gorillas' latest executive appointment reflects a push to "intensify" its marketing efforts and build an international brand focused on fast delivery, according to the announcement.
Calvert brings more than 20 years of experience in the retail and technology industries to her role at Gorillas, including stints at Walmart, Virgin America, Fendi, Google and Yahoo, according to her LinkedIn profile.
At Walmart, Calvert served briefly as vice president of brand and creative following positions as chief marketing officer for airlines Virgin Atlantic and Virgin America. Earlier in her career, Calvert was creative director for Google and director of marketing for Yahoo. She also founded a marketing company that has worked with clients like Netflix, eBay, Calvin Klein and Yahoo, per the announcement.
"Luanne has shown countless times how to create and develop successful brands in fast-growth sectors through innovative ideas," Sümer said in a statement. "Her boldness and courage to try new things reflects the spirit of Gorillas in the best way. This mindset paired with her incredible experience in the tech, retail and start-up field is what makes Luanne the perfect fit to further develop our brand and customer experience."
Calvert is stepping into her job at Gorillas as the company works to rapidly expand its business of delivering groceries and other goods to customers in as little as 10 minutes. Based in Berlin, Gorillas operates in more than 60 cities around the world, including instant delivery battleground New York City, where it launched service in selected neighborhoods last May.
In a sign of the challenges instant delivery companies face as they build the infrastructure to rush grocery orders to people in just minutes, Gorillas announced in September that it had placed plans to expand in the United States on hold. The company said at the time it would instead focus on building its business in New York, where it faces an armada of competitors, including Buyk, Getir, Fridge No More and Jokr.
Gorillas also provides service in cities including London, Paris, Madrid and Munich and has more than 200 warehouses in nine countries, according to the press release. In October, the company said it brought in almost $1 billion from investors, which it said it would use in part to increase its spending on marketing.
Gorillas' announcement that it has brought on Calvert follows its hiring last year of a chief financial officer, chief operating officer and chief people officer.