Delivery Hero heats up global service with new $50M

Krystal Peak · August 27, 2012 · Short URL:

To stay competitive with rival, Just-Eat, Delivery Hero plans to manke more global acquisitions

Nobody collects drawer full of takeout menus anymore, now we look to Yelp and online services to organize the restaurants in our area offering delivery food to our homes. One such company, Delivery Hero, has raised a whopping $50 million Series D to help people stay in the comfort of their own home whilst food rushes toward them.

The round was led by Kite Ventures, a previous backer of the company, and Kreos Capital also joined in this latest round.

Delivery Hero was a part of the startup factory Team Europe that has worked with Brands4Friends, AdScale and ChicChickClub.

Delivery Hero now has a total funding pot of approximately $100 million and is gaining on its competitor Just-Eat, that recently raised an additional $64 million bringing its funding to a $129.4 million. That could get you a whole lot of takeout.

Delivery Hero currently claims a network of 22,000 restaurants and operates in 11 countries: Sweden, Finland, Korea, Germany, UK, Australia, Russia, Poland, Austria, Switzerland and Mexico.

The Berlin-headquartered Delivery Hero plans use the new funds to fuel growth and that this will include, at least some, acquisitions.

"Kite Ventures and the other investors remain focused on the long-term strategy," said Lukasz Gadowski, partner at Team Europe. “ But they also know that Delivery Hero is knocking on the door of global domination, so they want to keep the pace.”

Just-Eat, on the other hand, operates in 13 countries, making it the “world’s biggest takeaway e-commerce provider."

Back in October, we reported that Just-Eat had acquired UK-based online takeout service Urbanbite.  Just-Eat said that it was drawn to Urbanbite's corporate business, which runs a program that allows corporate employees to place large takeout orders at the company's expense.  Some 60% of the 15,000 orders Urbanbite receives each month are from corporate employees.

Urbanbite, like Just-Eat, is headquartered in London, but only serviced the London area.  The company was founded in 1999 and acquired fellow online takeout service in 2000, at which point founder Ben Carmona came onboard as the new CEO.  

Over the last few months, food delivery has gotten its share of attention in the VC and tech world. Online daily deal service LivingSocial announced in November that it was launching a new food ordering feature to their LivingSocial Instant. The food ordering service is testing exclusively in the Washington D.C. area, with users able to order food and schedule for home or office delivery from participating restaurants.

As of launch, the initiative had more than 70 D.C.-local restaurants, including Wisey's, Chix, Sala Thai and Shawafel. And LivingSocial is sweetening the pot, marketing-wise, for vendors. One example given in LivingSocial's press release described a situation where a "Rasoi Daily Deal" offered on a Wednesday to D.C. customers would be redeemable through Thursday for LivingSocial Instant users.

Also, during the holiday season, companies like Kitchit were focused on taking some of the stress out of the holiday season by debuting a new set of “Home for the Holidays” curated menus.

Essentially, it’s like getting your holiday dinner catered—but by world-class, top-of-the-line gourmet chefs.  The site allows members to quickly and easily order up a classic Thanksgiving meal for 20, or a gourmet Chanukah meal for four.  Kitchit takes care of everything from shopping for the ingredients to the cleanup afterward (the part I resent the most).

Each holiday package came with a full menu description, an overview of the service style (individual plating or family-style), pricing info, and a full chef bio.

Because it is a fine dining experience brought to your home, the service isn’t cheap.  It starts at $50 a head and goes up from there.  And like other luxury services, such as Gilt Groupe, membership to the site is by invitation only.

Back in June, here on US soil, a Boston-based company, TaskRabbit announced the debut of a new delivery feature in San Francisco, letting people hire neighbors to pick up and deliver items to their homes.  If you live within the limits of the city, you can request to have anything your heart desires delivered right to your doorstep for an introductory flat rate of $10.  Once you place your order, it’s automatically assigned to one of the 500 “taskrabbits” in San Francisco.  The feature even allows you to track your delivery on your phone.

The on-demand delivery service is an extension of TaskRabbit’s iPhone app.  Simply launch the app, tap the Deliver Now feature, and post your delivery need.  There are a couple of caveats—the Deliver Now feature is only available Monday through Friday from 9am to 7pm.

The company is facing down a rising tide of competition from sites like Zaarly, which was founded last year and has already raised over $15 million, and Postmates, which launched its on-demand delivery service last month.

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