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Russia's Yandex launches e-grocery delivery in Israel under new Deli brand

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MOSCOW, Nov 23 (Reuters) - Russian internet giant Yandex on Monday announced further expansion in Israel with the launch of its online grocery delivery, a service that has capitalised on demand in Russia during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Russia's e-commerce market has boomed this year as lockdown restrictions have kept shoppers at home, with Yandex.Lavka, a 15-minute grocery delivery service, one of the main beneficiaries.

Yango, the international arm of Yandex Go, the firm's taxi aggregator and food tech business, said the service would operate in Israel under a new brand, Deli, and would initially deliver goods within 10-15 minutes from small warehouses around three cities, Tel Aviv, Gamat Ran and Givatayim, before expanding to other areas.

Yango launched its ride-hailing service in Israel in December 2018.

"Seeing the consumer changes following the new situation worldwide, Yango decided to support and promote the extremely fast delivery services and deal with the complex situation and new consumption habits," Yango said in a statement.

The service works using 'dark stores', dedicated warehouses that cater only to online clients, allowing for swift delivery and cheaper rental costs, Yango said.

The service launched in Russia in 2019 and takes more than one million orders every month, with over 240 dark stores in operation.

It generated 2.5 billion roubles ($32.9 million) in revenue in the third quarter, Yandex said.

($1 = 75.9600 roubles) (Reporting by Nadezhda Tsydenova; writing by Alexander Marrow; editing by Jason Neely)