Just Eat orders soar 58% as UK households indulge in another 35.5m takeaways

The owner of online food delivery giant Just Eat has said UK orders jumped 58% in the final three months of 2020 as the pandemic sent demand surging.

Just Eat notched up 35.5 million UK orders in the fourth quarter with deliveries rising nearly five-fold – up 387% – to 2.9 million.

Just Eat Takeaway.com said it had put “tremendous effort” into improving its UK business, overhauling its marketing strategy, doubling its sales force and adding a raft of new restaurants, having signed up McDonald’s and Greggs to the platform last year.

The pandemic has also helped, with more families forced to eat in amid tough restrictions and lockdowns to control a second wave of coronavirus.

UK growth picked up pace from 43% in the third quarter, with demand boosted by the November lockdown and as restaurants were forced to close across many areas of Britain.

Overall, the Dutch-based business said global orders rose 57% and total fourth-quarter revenues rose more than 60% to between 720 million euros (£643 million) and 740 million euros (£661 million).

The fourth-quarter performance means full-year revenues are on track to rise by more than 50%, up to 2.4 billion euros (£2.1 billion).

In the UK, full-year orders rose 35% to 132.9 million and delivery orders were 190% higher at 10.1 million.

The group said it would continue to invest in growth and prioritise increasing its market share over profits.

Jitse Groen, chief executive of Just Eat Takeaway.com, said: “The fourth quarter of 2020 marks our third consecutive quarter of order growth acceleration.

“Our investment programme is very successful and has led to significant market share gains in most of our countries.”

“In 2021, we will continue to invest in price leadership, improving our service levels and expanding our offering to restaurants and consumers,” he added.

Just Eat Takeaway.com has been on a buying spree of rivals in recent years to cement its position as the world’s biggest online takeaway platform – with a takeover of Grubhub approved on October 7.

It came after Takeaway.com last year sealed a £6.2 billion deal to buy Just Eat, after a long and bitter takeover battle.

The UK’s competition watchdog, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), gave the move the green light in April.

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