Sure, why not? Food delivery is a hot industry everywhere, but the market is already crowded and leaders have emerged. This makes EasyFood's timing less than ideal.
— Kristen Hawley
EasyJet founder Stelios Haji-Ioannou is launching a takeout delivery service to rival Just Eat Plc, as the British entrepreneur seeks to grab a slice of the U.K.’s fast-growing online market.
EasyFood will let Britons order home deliveries from local restaurants and takeouts through its website or a mobile app. The service will initially target Birmingham and London, with a full release expected in six weeks to two months, according to a person familiar with the matter.
EasyFood will further intensify competition for market leader Just Eat, which has reported slowing growth amid competition from Deliveroo, Amazon.com Inc. and Uber. The U.K. market leader announced a 200 million-pound ($265 million) acquisition of its rival Hungryhouse in December, which U.K. regulators are probing.
Just Eat shares fell as much as 2.1 percent to 666 pence in London. The company estimated in a March investor presentation that the U.K. delivery market is valued at 6.1 billion pounds.
EasyFood will further broaden Haji-Ioannou’s diverse business interests. Since founding EasyJet, the British Cypriot entrepreneur has branched out to everything from hotels to discount grocery retailing to gyms.
©2017 Bloomberg L.P.