Monday 21 December 2020 2:20 pm

Coronavirus helps Deliveroo take home profits in 2020

Deliveroo has recorded profits for six months in 2020, with coronavirus helping the business turn the tide on last year’s losses. 

The last 12 months have marked a year of growth for the food delivery app, following a couple of years of investment that saw losses at the business run into the hundreds of millions. 

Read more: Deliveroo appoints new chair ahead of rumoured public listing

In its 2018 financial year Deliveroo recorded losses of £232m, up from a still hefty £199m the year before. In 2019 losses climbed still, up to £319.9m, although the company said that was because it expanded and spent money on the business, rolling out to 200 more towns and cities. 

Now, with a helping hand from the coronavirus, Deliveroo is profitable in 11 of 12 of the markets it operates in, and has achieved profitability in 2020 Q2 and Q3. The full details of its 2020 numbers are unlikely to be released until late next year.

Read more: Aldi extends Deliveroo service across London

Deliveroo CEO and founder Will Shu said: “This year we have seen rapid consumer adoption of online food delivery, with more people ordering more frequently. Covid has accelerated strong underlying trends and there is an enormous opportunity ahead. 

“At Deliveroo we are relentlessly focused on developing the leading proposition for consumers, riders and restaurants. We will be investing in expanding delivery-only kitchens, expanding on-demand grocery, developing new tools to help restaurants grow their businesses and giving consumers increased choice.”

Delivering the goods

Read more: Deliveroo adds ex-Worldpay CFO to board

In 2020 Deliveroo saw increased engagement from customers. The number of monthly active users on the platform was up, as was the number of orders per customer. 

Deliveroo now operates in nearly 800 towns and cities following expansion in 2020. It works with 140,000 restaurants and more than 110,000 riders globally. 

Read more: Sainsbury’s launches partnership with Deliveroo

The company is rumoured to be gearing up for a public listing in the coming months and recently made two big-name hires to help to lead the business – the ex-CEO of Worldpay, and a former director at HM Treasury. 

Deliveroo is said to have appointed bankers at JP Morgan as it steps up preparations for the float in London next year. Goldman Sachs is also on board to oversee its long-awaited London flotation.

In 2021 Deliveroo plans to expand to new locations and develop new tools to support restaurants. It has also said it will support local communities, for example by delivering free meals to vulnerable groups and NHS workers.