Takeaway.com merges with Just Eat to create food delivery giant

13 Jan 2020

Image: © New Africa/Stock.adobe.com

Just Eat has finally decided to accept Takeaway.com’s merger offer, creating what will soon become one of the world’s largest food delivery companies.

In July 2019, Dutch food delivery platform Takeaway.com announced its intention to merge with Just Eat. In the six months since, there was some uncertainty as to whether this deal would go ahead.

This was in part due to other offers that were made, as well opposition from Just Eat shareholder Eminence Capital. The US asset management firm, which owns 4.4pc of London-based Just Eat, was not satisfied with the deal that Takeaway.com put on the table, calling it “grossly inadequate”.

However, on 10 January, Takeaway.com confirmed that it had reached an agreement with the British business, which will create one of the world’s largest meal delivery companies.

The newly merged company

The new company will be led by Takeaway.com CEO Jitse Groen and will be headquartered in Amsterdam, with a listing in London.

Groen said: “I am thrilled. Just Eat Takeaway.com is a dream combination and I am very much looking forward to leading the company for many years to come.”

The newly merged company will now have 23 subsidiaries in Europe, Canada, Australia and Latin America. Just Eat trades as Skip the Dishes in Canada, and Menulog in Australia and New Zealand. The company also has a stake in Brazil’s iFood, which Takeaway.com plans to sell.

In each of these regions, the business will face competition from the likes of Uber Eats, Prosus, Deliveroo and SoftBank-backed DoorDash.

The end of an ‘uncertain time’ for Just Eat

The two companies have agreed on a £5.9bn all-share offer, after 80.4pc of Just Eat shareholders had agreed to the conditions. The deal is worth 889p per share, beating the 800p per share offer made by Prosus.

When Prosus approached Just Eat, it said that the company was underestimating the investment that would be needed to compete with Uber Eats, Deliveroo and Amazon.

Prosus CEO Bob van Dijk said: “Just Eat is not an acquisition we wanted to make at any cost and while we have significant financial capacity, we believe that our final offer of 800p per share was appropriate in light of the investment required and preserved our ability to create value for shareholders.”

After edging out Prosus in the end, Groen said: “I wish to thank everybody involved, but especially the Just Eat staff for their patience, in what must have been an uncertain time.”

Kelly Earley was a journalist with Silicon Republic