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Michael Moritz – chairman of Sequoia Capital and one of the most successful venture capitalists in history – says a simple vision led him to invest hundreds of millions of dollars in on-demand delivery startups.Led by Sequoia and another blue-chip Silicon Valley firm – Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers – venture investors have poured at least $9 billion into 125 on-demand delivery companies over the past decade, including $2.5 billion this year, according to a Reuters analysis of publicly available data.Reuters analyzed investment in on-demand delivery startups using publicly available data from the companies, their backers and third-party websites including Crunchbase, PitchBook and MatterMark.This year has seen high-profile failures, including U.S. meal delivery firm SpoonRocket, which went down in March, and PepperTap, an Indian grocery delivery service backed by Sequoia that folded in April.Established logistics companies including Amazon and DHL are also exploring local on-demand delivery.Dalton Caldwell, a partner at Y Combinator – the prestigious tech incubator that birthed a number of delivery startups – was also skeptical, though he thought companies with top-notch operational capabilities could succeed.The online grocery firm Webvan and the urban delivery company Kozmo were two of the highest-profile flops in the late-1990s dot-com boom.
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