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Coles teams with Airtasker as Amazon looms

The two companies are trialling a 12-month partnership in Sydney just as competition is set to ramp up thanks to the debut of Amazon.

Australia's Largest Supermarket Grocery Stores Battle For Consumer Popularity
Quinn Rooney/Getty Images

Amazon finally launched in Australia last week, and it's not just potential customers who are paying attention. The e-tail giant's new competitors are clearly on notice, too.

Supermarket chain Coles is starting a 12-month trial of working with Airtasker to deliver groceries to customers in Sydney, it was announced Tuesday.

Like Woolworths, the supermarket chain already offers online shopping. This new agreement is designed to offer a better version of that service, improving the flexibility of home delivery by giving you a direct line of contact with your deliverer.

The Sydney-based Airtasker is a popular platform that's described as the eBay of odd jobs. You put up a job, like "move my furniture" or "assemble my wardrobe," and people send you offers of how much dough they want in exchange for said job. The Coles Airtasker squad will be different though, in that they'll have to do a training course to earn themselves a Coles badge. 

"This trial with Airtasker will make shopping even more convenient by allowing customers to deal directly with the person doing their shopping and bringing it to them," said Coles Online General Manager Karen Donaldson.  "Whether it's picking up a box of nappies at midnight or specifying unripe avocados so you can eat them later in the week, we think customers will love this new level of personalised service."

Meanwhile, US online behemoth Amazon seems set to bring its own grocery service, AmazonFresh, to Australia. The company has been quietly recruiting for the Australian version since the start of the year. It's invested heavily in the US' AmazonFresh, acquiring high-end grocery chain Whole Foods in August. 

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