Takeaway delivery giant Just Eat has revealed that Britons stuck in lockdown ordered a total of 64 million meals through the firm in the first three months of 2021.
The company said order numbers soared across all its markets by 79 per cent over the past three months as lockdown measures sparked demand from housebound customers.
The Just Eat Takeaway.com group told investors on Tuesday morning that it processed around 200 million orders globally in the first quarter of 2021.
The company – created through the £6.2 billion merger between Just Eat and Dutch rival Takeaway last year – said growth was particularly strong in the UK market.
Just Eat UK processed 64 million orders in the quarter, up 96 per cent compared with the same period of 2020.
It said it was boosted by signing deals with chains such as Leon, Tortilla and Chipotle, as well as coffee brands Starbucks and Costa, to add to its portfolio of restaurants.
Just Eat has seen a surge in the number of orders as first quarter figures reveal Britons stuck in lockdown ordered 64 million meals through the takeaway delivery company so far this year.
Pictured: company’s advert which has been running through lockdown featuring Snoop Dogg
The company, based in the Netherlands, has rapidly expanded its own delivery operations in recent years to accommodate its marketplace business, where restaurants use its platform but deliver the orders themselves.
Chief executive Jitse Groen said: ‘The first quarter of 2021 marks our fourth consecutive quarter of order growth acceleration.
‘Our fastest-growing segment was the United Kingdom, and we are especially pleased with the rollout of our UK Delivery network, which has reached an impressive 695 per cent order growth rate year on year.
‘We are also very proud of the acceleration in two of our highly profitable markets, with 77 per cent order growth in Germany and 53 per cent in the Netherlands.
Earlier this month, Just Eat revealed which was the most popular takeaway meal in each region
Firm said its order growth was strongest in the UK where it had increased by 96 per cent
Food delivery firms and the gig economy
The issue of workers’ rights has been at the forefront of conversations surrounding food delivery companies including Just Eat, Uber and Deliveroo.
Last month, Uber faced a landmark ruling from the Supreme Court which found that Uber drivers were entitled to benefits.
Uber announced its UK drivers would become its first globally to be paid both a minimum wage and holiday pay.
The company will also offer drivers paid holiday time and enrol them into a pension plan as they become classified as workers, not independent contractors.
Meanwhile, Deliveroo riders are treated as gig economy workers meaning they are not entitled to rights such as sick pay but also face fewer obligations such as being able to turn down shifts.
The model has been criticised by workers’ rights groups and was a source of concern for investors when ahead of its launch on the London Stock Exchange.
Last year, Just Eat said they were keen to give staff more benefits in light of the difficulties caused by the pandemic.
‘Just Eat Takeaway.com is in excellent shape and the start of 2021 has been very strong.’
Shares in the FTSE 100 company were 2 per cent higher at 7,504p in early trading on Tuesday.
The company has benefited from various lockdowns which have been imposed across the UK and Europe since the pandemic began last March.
In a year that’s seen many restaurants close their doors and thousands of people hit with cooking fatigue, many have reached for their phones to indulge in a takeaway on a regular basis.
Earlier this month, Just Eat revealed which meals Britons had been drawn to while in lockdown in 2020.
The company revealed pizza has been the most ordered dish every year since 2017 in the UK, with it soaring in 2020 to account for a whopping 19 per cent of all Just Eat’s orders.
Missing out on the top spot was Chinese takeaway, which topped the polls from 2011 to 2016.
Dishes from Chinese restaurants were also the most popular last year in southern England, with it taking the top spot in London, the south east and the south west, while Indian food was the most ordered cuisine in Scotland, and the third most ordered nationwide.
It comes as takeaway delivery rival Deliveroo launched its £7.6bn stock market listing at the end of last month.
The company has also enjoyed order growth as a result of lockdown and said the value of orders it received was up 121 per cent in January and February – but it has never made a profit.
The official £7.6billion figure, equivalent to 390p per share, was at the bottom end of the food delivery firm’s previous pricing range following an investor backlash over staff working conditions.
In demand: Deliveroo said the value of orders it received was up 121% in January and February
Deliveroo riders are treated as gig economy workers – a term used to describe those in temporary jobs where they do not enjoy rights such as sick pay and minimum notice periods – but also face fewer obligations, such as being able to turn down shifts or quit to focus on study.
Amazon-backed Deliveroo maintains that its riders – which total around 100,000 across 800 cities worldwide – value the flexibility the job affords.
Last year, JustEat.com boss Jitse Groen revealed he would prefer to give his staff more benefits in light of the difficulties they have faced since the coronavirus pandemic.
Mr Groen said he did not like the idea of his Just Eat workforce – which the company relies on to deliver meals from restaurants – to have to endure harder working conditions.
Last month Uber, who also operate a takeaway delivery service, announced its UK drivers would become its first globally to be paid both a minimum wage and holiday pay.
Uber will also offer drivers paid holiday time and enrol them into a pension plan as they become classified as workers, not independent contractors.
The announcement followed a ruling by the Supreme Court last month that Uber drivers were entitled to the benefits.
Earlier this month, Just Eat revealed that pizza made up 19 per cent of all UK orders in 2020, ranking it top as Britain’s favourite takeaway choice.
Chinese was the most popular dish in 2020 in London and south, while Indian took top spot in Scotland and vegan food saw an increase of 2900% over 5 years