German food delivery startup Delivery Hero has said it will IPO by the end of the year after mounting speculation surrounding a public listing.
Tech hot house Rocket Internet, a major backer of the startup, had kept quiet on the plans in a market update last week, but Delivery Hero chief executive Niklas Ostberg committed to the float in announcement on Tuesday morning.
It is seeking to raise €450m from newly issued shares and the sale of shares from existing investors. Reuters reports the float could value the company at between €3.5bn and €4bn.
"Delivery Hero has been on a strong growth path since its inception. Going public and listing our shares on the stock market will further enable us to develop the company and provide us with additional capital to expand our leadership positions in the online food ordering and delivery market. An IPO will also give us more flexibility as we continue to focus on creating an amazing takeaway experience," he said.
He previously said the loss-making company was "in no hurry" to float, but that it could come this year.
Delivery Hero operates in 33 markets around the world and has a network of more than 300,000 restaurants. In the UK it is in the middle of selling Hungryhouse to rival Just Eat, a deal which is facing an in-depth probe by the competition watchdog.
It said like-for-like revenues in 2016 were €347m, uop 71 per cent on the previous year and its adjusted loss before tax, depreciation and amortisation was €116m, reduced from €175m a year earlier. It also added that it was break even in the Middle East North Africa (MENA) region. It boasted a 57 per cent increase in order numbers last year.
Rocket Internet owns a 35 per cent stake and South African media company Naspers a 10 per cent stake. The listing will take place on Germany's Frankfurt stock exchange and in Luxembourg.