Tuesday 2 February 2021 5:13 pm

Uber shares fizz on $1.1bn takeover of alcohol delivery firm Drizly

Shares in Uber moved up a gear this afternoon after it announced a $1.1bn (£806m) deal to acquire alcohol delivery service Drizly.

The deal, which is Uber’s biggest acquisition since it bought rival Postmates last year, will be paid more than 90 per cent through stock, with the remainder paid in cash.

Once the transaction has completed, Drizly’s booze marketplace will be integrated with the Uber Eats app. The company will also keep a standalone Drizly app.

Shares in the ride-hailing firm were up more than seven per cent in New York.

Boston-based Drizly, which was founded in 2012, has grown into the largest US alcohol delivery service and is available in more than 1,400 cities.

The company, dubbed “Amazon for liquor”, has benefited from increased demand during the pandemic as consumers order beer, wine and spirits while staying at home.

Uber has also shifted its focus to its food delivery offering during the Covid crisis, acquiring Postmates for $2.7bn following its failed bid for Grubhub.

The San Francisco-based tech firm also bought Cornershop, a grocery delivery service focus on Latin America, last year.

“Wherever you want to go and whatever you need to get, our goal at Uber is to make people’s lives a little bit easier,” said Uber chief executive Dara Khosrowshahi.

“That’s why we’ve been branching into new categories like groceries, prescriptions and, now, alcohol.”

The deal is subject to regulatory approval and is expected to complete in the first half of 2021.