Just Eat boss says Government’s Eat Out scheme not hurting takeaway business

The boss of food delivery giant Just Eat Takeaway.com has said the Government’s scheme to give diners half-price restaurant meals has not damaged his business.

Chief executive Jitse Groen said that, despite takeaways being excluded from Eat Out To Help Out, which gives diners a 50% discount, he is seeing little effect.

“Food delivery is rarely in direct competition with restaurant visits, and that doesn’t change under these circumstances,” the Dutch boss said on a call with the press on Wednesday morning.

Restaurants have limited capacity because they can only seat a certain number of people, he said.

“We don’t believe that there will be a material impact on our figures because of these relief measures from the UK Government.”

Mr Groen said he was not personally upset that the Competition and Markets Authority cleared Amazon to take a stake in its UK rival, Deliveroo.

But he added: “I am an entrepreneur, I don’t particularly care who’s competing with us.

“I think the UK consumer should be upset that that happened.

“And that has nothing to do with Deliveroo, that has something to do with Amazon.”

Just Eat Takeaway.com processed around 257 million orders in the first six months of the year as takeaway companies supplied food to people in lockdown.

The company said that had pushed up its revenue, while it added a record number of new restaurants and customers to its system.

The number of active customers increased from 44 million to 54 million compared with the same time last year, it said.

Customers are also ordering more, Mr Groen said.

The Dutch firm said its like-for-like pre-tax loss was 121 million euros (£109 million), on revenue that had increased by 44% to just over one billion euros (£927 million).

“Just Eat Takeaway.com is in the fortunate position to benefit from continuing tailwinds,” Mr Groen said.

“On the back of the current momentum, we started an aggressive investment programme, which we believe will further strengthen our market positions.

“We are convinced that our order growth will remain strong for the remainder of the year.”

Just Eat Takeaway is in the process of buying US peer Grubhub for 7.3 billion US dollars (£5.6 billion).

The deal is likely to complete in the first half of next year, but Mr Groen declined to talk more about it.

The deal is set to make the company one of the biggest delivery firms in the world outside China.