While Brexit blues and fiscal uncertainty continue to rock the boat for restaurateurs throughout the UK, home delivery giant Just Eat has bucked the trend, raising its annual trade forecasts this week after reporting a 47% revenue increase internationally for the last quarter, The Independent reports.
For the three months to 30 September, Just Eat reports a 22 per cent increase in UK orders to 26.2 million, bolstering projected company-wide revenues for the 2017 fiscal year to £515-530 million, up from previous forecasts of £500-510 million.
“The Just Eat team has once again delivered another period of strong growth,” said CEO Peter Plumb, “…it is great to see the UK business in good health and positive momentum across our international markets.”
As UK restaurants face the promise of continued downturn and mass closures, and the juggernauts of casual dining continue to announce massive losses and shed under-performing branches, continued growth from the disruptive home delivery sector casts an interesting light on the problem at hand. As Deliveroo continues to innovate and experiment with new concepts, Just Eat reinforces its continued growth with the news that its proposed acquisition of Hungryhouse has received provisional approval from the Competition and Markets Authority. The crucial question here is the strength of the link between the casual downturn and the delivery uptake. It’s one thing to say that the accessibility of takeaway provides a boost, while Brexit bites harder on operators with rents to pay and seats to fill; another entirely to suggest that the delivery model is exerting serious pressure on its more stationary counterpart.