Deliveroo sales grew to £277 million ($361 million) worldwide in 2017, a jump of 116% over 2016, but losses also grew to £184.7 million ($240 million), 30% up from 2016, with the company also launching in its 200th city last year -- Orléans, France -- as it invested heavily in its own growth.
This comes as Bloomberg reported last week that US-based ride-sharing company Uber was in early negotiations to buy the British food delivery "unicorn." While Uber has its own food delivery service -- Uber Eats -- it is not as widespread as Deliveroo, which has over 500 cities on its service globally as of October 2018. Buying Deliveroo would make Uber a force to be reckoned with in Europe's food delivery market, alongside rivals Just Eat, Takeaway and Delivery Hero.
Deliveroo's turquoise-clad cyclists are a common sight across the UK. (Image: Deliveroo)
In the UK during 2017, Just Eat was by far the largest food delivery company, followed by Deliveroo and Uber Eats. Just Eat's dominance is likely due to its acquisition of rival Hungryhouse in 2017, which was formerly a major player in the food delivery market across Europe. Although a combined Deliveroo-Uber Eats wouldn't challenge Just Eat for the top spot, it would put Just Eat in a vulnerable spot, as both the Uber and Deliveroo brands are strong across the UK, and with more and more consumers ordering via mobile apps, they could take away Just Eat's crown.
According to the Bloomberg report, Deliveroo's shareholders, which include co-founders Will Shu and Greg Orlowski, are not keen to sell the company or "relinquish control." That makes sense: there are still a lot of opportunities for growth in the food delivery market, and judging by its substantial growth in the last couple of years, Deliveroo is just getting started.