Heating up a worldwide battle to meet consumer demand for delivered meals, European food delivery firm Delivery Hero SE has agreed to purchase Woowa Brothers for $4 billion. eCommerce food delivery companies around the globe are teaming up as more people decide to have their meals sent to their offices or homes, The Wall Street Journal reported.
Delivery Hero, which is based in Berlin, said per the report that purchasing Woowa would grow its presence in Asia and solidify its position as the biggest platform for food delivery outside of China in terms of the number of orders. With the deal, the companies will make a joint venture in Singapore to compete across Asia with Uber Eats, Grab Holdings Inc. and Gojek Group.
Woowa, which is based in Seoul, is the biggest online food delivery service in South Korea. The firm does business with the Baedal Minjok brand name and has fulfilled 365 million orders in the year that ended with September and counts over 8 million monthly active users. Even with multiple platforms in the region, Woowa founder Bongjin Kim said the market in South Korea was “still in the very early stages of development.”
As more consumers across Asia become accustomed to eCommerce as well as digital payments and get online, investors are betting that they will use apps for food. Investors put $8.2 billion into food delivery startups last year per PitchBook. Asia has been a particularly popular investment focus, which has been dominated by companies such as southeast Asian ride-hailing firm Grab.
In separate news, Just Eat has once again turned down an offer from Netherlands-based Prosus, saying the deal still “significantly undervalues” the firm. The firm upped its cash offer to a bit more than £5 billion ($6.6 billion) — £740 per share, up £30 over its last bid. Just Eat rejected a Prosus takeover proposal worth £4.9 billion in October. The Dutch-listed Takeaway reportedly values Just Eat at around £691 per share at current exchange rates as calculated by one media outlet.