Takeaway orders at Just Eat fell 5% in the first quarter – but Britain bucks the trend

  • The Amsterdam-based business received 214.2m orders in the opening quarter 
  • Just Eat’s total GTV fell by 2 per cent, or €118m, to €6.55bn during the period 

Just Eat Takeaway saw 5 per cent fewer orders during the first three months of 2024 as cost-of-living pressures continued to rein in consumer spending.

The Amsterdam-based business received 214.2 million orders in the opening quarter, compared to 227.2 million over the same period last year.

This was largely driven by North America, where orders decreased by 12 per cent to 64.9million and the tally of all purchases on Just Eat’s platform – known as gross transaction value (GTV) – contracted by 11 per cent to €2.34billion.

Declining trade: Just Eat Takeaway received 214.2 million orders in the opening quarter, compared to 227.2 million over the same period last year

Just Eat’s orders and GTV also shrank by double-digit percentage levels in Southern Europe, Australia, and New Zealand – 16 per cent and 15 per cent, respectively.

However, they bucked the trend in Britain despite a subdued economic backdrop, with orders rising by 1 per cent to 60.3 million and GTV expanding by 11 per cent to €1.7billion.

Consequently, the London-listed firm’s total GTV fell by 2 per cent, or €118million, to €6.55billion, in line with analysts’ average estimates.

Following the result, Just Eat bosses have upheld the company’s annual guidance for GTV growth, excluding North America, of between 2 and 6 per cent, and earnings before nasties of around €450million.

Just Eat’s latest trading update comes a day after it announced the ‘difficult decision’ to quit New Zealand, where it trades under the name Menulog.

The group said the country represented a small proportion of its operations, while its size made it ‘insufficient to maintain a healthy business.’

Just Eat is also looking to exit the North American food delivery market through a full or partial sale of Grubhub, which it bought for £5.75billion just three years ago.

‘There can be no certainty that any such strategic actions will be agreed or what the timing of such agreements will be,’ it told investors on Wednesday.

The business originally agreed to acquire Grubhub in mid-2020 when the enforced closure of hospitality venues and curbs on public socialising sent takeaway orders surging.

Yet following the takeover’s completion, loosening pandemic restrictions and spiralling losses led the firm to consider a sale of the Chicago-based subsidiary. 

Russ Mould, investment director at AJ Bell, described Gruhub as ‘the black sheep’ in Just Eat’s portfolio, whose acquisition ‘looks increasingly ill-timed.’

He added: ‘The company already reports ex-North America figures, but until it can secure an exit, then the market is likely to judge the group in the round, and that includes its operations across the Atlantic.’

Just Eat Takeaway shares were 5.2 per cent down at £11.34 on late Wednesday afternoon, meaning they have plummeted by around 89 per cent since peaking at £100.50 in October 2020.

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk