- Amazon-backed Deliveroo posted sales of £476 million ($584 million) in 2018 — equal to about 60% of Grubhub’s and Just Eat’s sales last year, and 40% of Uber Eats’ sales.
- The meal-delivery startup’s pre-tax loss rose 16% to £232 million ($285 million), a far cry from Just Eat’s £102 million ($125 million) and Grubhub’s $81.4 million in profits last year.
- Deliveroo also has fewer restaurant partners than its rivals.
- Watch Amazon, Grubhub, Just Eat, and Uber trade live.
Amazon-backed Deliveroo grew sales by 72% to £476 million ($584 million) in 2018, but it still fell short of rivals Grubhub, Just Eat, and Uber Eats.
The UK meal-delivery startup’s revenue was equal to about 60% of Just Eat’s £780 million ($957 million) and Grubhub’s $1 billion in sales last year, and 40% of Uber Eats’ $1.46 billion.
Deliveroo’s pre-tax losses climbed 16% to £232 million ($285 million) in 2018. In contrast, Grubhub earned $81.4 million in pre-tax profits, and Just Eat netted £102 million ($125 million). Uber doesn’t break out profits for Uber Eats.
The company continues to operate at a smaller scale than its competitors. Deliveroo works with 80,000 restaurant partners — less than 40% of the 220,000 restaurants on Uber Eats’ platform, and comfortably below Grubhub’s 125,000 and Just Eat’s 107,000.
Deliveroo is also active in around 500 towns and cities — comparable to Uber’s footprint of about 500 cities, but well short of Grubhub’s 2,400 US cities. (The latest figure we could find for Just Eat was 870 cities at the end of 2017.)
Grubhub and Just Eat made their names as online-ordering platforms, connecting consumers to restaurants but not delivering takeaways. However, both have branched out into delivery, making them direct competitors to Deliveroo.
Deliveroo seems to be working hard to catch up with its rivals. Last year it launched its service in Taiwan and Kuwait, and expanded into more than 250 new towns and cities. It also received a $575 million investment from Amazon this May, taking its total fundraising to north of $1.5 billion. Deliveroo plans to spend those funds growing its tech team and developing new technologies, reaching more customers, and offering more support to its restaurant partners and riders.
The group has also taken steps to guard against the growing backlash towards “gig economy” businesses, which have cut their costs by treating workers as independent contractors rather than employees entitled to a minimum wage and benefits. California recently passed a bill designed to force companies like Uber and Lyft to treat their workers more like full-time staff.
Deliveroo may be preparing for regulators to scrutinize its business. It invested £10 million ($12.3 million) to provide cost-free insurance to its riders last year, and also gave them them free access to hundreds of online courses.