Just Eat ignores investor calls for merger as it bounces back in first half

Just Eat Takeaway has ignored suggestions from investor Cat Rock that it should consider a merger or divest its assets.

The food delivery giant’s chief executive Jitse Groen has admitted the company has “quite a lot of work to do on communication” after it received criticism from the investor.

“We don’t think it makes sense for a leading food delivery business to sell leading businesses, that is a solution that we don’t agree with,” Groen said on the proposed merger to the Financial Times, noting the company’s “very profitable” operations in Canada, Australia and South America.

Cat Rock criticised the food delivery company’s communication with its investors, claiming it was “broken” meanwhile suggesting the company explored a merger with rivals DoorDash, Delivery Hero and Amazon or be subjected to hostile takeover.

READ MORE: Tesco Bank faces backlash as it prevents customers switching soon-to-be-closed current accounts

Groen hit back and said: “If it’s good for the business, we’ll look at it. If it’s bad for the business, we won’t.”

The news comes as the company announced it reached the peak of its losses in the first half of the year as a result of its continued expansion into grocery delivery and increasing the scale of its business.

Just Eat’s pre-tax loss leapt from €26m in the first interim of 2020 to €395m in the same period this year.

However, the group’s UK market has seen the fastest growth so far, adding 58 million orders on top of the 135 million orders it saw in the first interim period of this year, double the growth of its competitors.

UK average monthly order frequency has climbed to 3.2 times from 2.5 times a year ago.

The company’s active consumer base rose by 21 per cent in 98 million while at the same time, its gross transaction value also increased by 50 per cent to €14.1bn in the first half.

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