Wednesday 14 September 2016 9:41 am

Just Eat delivers new chatbot "coach" to advise customers on takeaways

Takeaway giant Just Eat will launch a Facebook Messenger chatbot food "coach" as part of an ambitious, tech-focused rebrand in which it is attempting to create "the world's greatest food community". 

Just Eat's chatbot will be on hand to customers to "bring food discovery to life by engaging with customers to coach and inspire their food choices", the company announced today.

However, it sounds suspiciously like the chatbot will operate more as a restaurant suggester than an expert cuisine advice service:

Reflecting the personality of the Just Eat brand, customers will be able to message the chatbot, whether they fancy ordering their usual favourite or trying something new, and the bot will offer them a selection of different restaurants they haven’t previously ordered from if that’s where their mood takes them.

With the mass invasion of other takeaway specialists swarming the UK market, including UberEats, plucky startup Deliveroo and – in London – even the rise of rotisserie chicken deliveries, it's no wonder Just Eat is trying to up its app game and sweeten its customers to stay put. 

The brand shake-up comes a fortnight after the group binned its Benelux business for €22.5m (£19m), and three weeks after it upgraded its earnings guidance for the second time this year.

Read more: Just Eat delivers new finance chief

The rebrand will first be unveiled this Friday in the UK, and will include a new-look website, apps for the Apple WatchOS 3 and Apple Watch Series 2 watches, a boosted advertising campaign and new jackets for its delivery drivers.

It will later be rolled out to the other 12 countries in which Just Eat operates – and where the company is also the market leader.

Just Eat's global marketing chief Barnaby Dawe said: "Our new brand acknowledges what Just Eat has achieved so far while setting the tone for where we want to go next. It marks an evolution in our approach to meeting our customers’ changing expectations and to adding more value to the relationship we have with our restaurant partners."