UPDATE 2-Delivery Hero sees 2021 revenues more than doubling on quick commerce boom

(Adds share move, details on Woowa merger, CEO quote)

April 28 (Reuters) – Delivery Hero expects revenues to more than double in 2021, the German online food takeaway firm said on Wednesday, fuelled by investments and booming quick commerce, which aims to deliver goods in as little as 10 to 15 minutes.

The Berlin-based company expects revenues to reach 6.1 billion to 6.6 billion euros this year compared to 2.8 billion euros ($3.38 billion) in 2020.

It said it would keep investing in Dmarts, which are centrally located warehouses that serve only local customers who order online, and new markets such as Japan or Vietnam.

The company said it would merge its operations in Japan with South Korean food delivery app owner Woowa Brothers, its latest acquisition in the world’s third-largest online food delivery market. It would operate under the local brand foodpanda.

Shares in the company, which was promoted last year to Germany’s blue-chip index DAX, less than a decade after it was founded, were up 2.5% in early Frankfurt trade.

The German group, which operates in about 50 countries, has invested extensively in the past year not only in food delivery but also in quick commerce, which has grown rapidly during the coronavirus crisis.

“Looking ahead, there are many industry trends that provide ample growth opportunities for our business, such as the ever-evolving customer demand for convenience and speed,” Chief Executive Officer Niklas Oestberg said in a statement.

Quick commerce operations saw a significant expansion in the first quarter, Delivery Hero said, with orders growing more than 400% compared to the previous year.

Delivery Hero and rivals such as Uber Eats, Just Eat Takeaway.com and Deliveroo have seen a surge in demand in pandemic lockdowns, but some analysts question how much of that business will persist as restaurants reopen.

First-quarter revenues more than doubled at 1.4 billion euros, above analysts’ estimate of 1.07 billion euros seen in a company provided poll, making it the ninth consecutive quarter with revenue growth of around 100%.

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