Largest US food delivery service enters Eastern Europe via Wolt takeoverReading Time: < 1 minutes
America’s biggest food delivery firm DoorDash made a grand entrance onto the delivery service markets of Central and Eastern Europe on Tuesday with a EUR 7bn stock acquisition of Finland’s Wolt.
As a startup, Wolt made its first delivery in Helsinki in 2014 and since then has expanded into 23 countries including the Baltic states, Croatia, Czechia, Norway, Hungary, Poland, Serbia, Slovakia and Slovenia. DoorDash’s buy-out also bolsters a long-held ambition to move into Germany, which it had earlier planned to do by opening an office in Berlin this year. With the takeover, the US firm now also has a footprint in Tokyo, Japan.
The food and grocery markets in which Wolt has operated are worth USD 1.2 trillion, yet those locations have an online penetration of just 6%. Wolt, which went public in late 2020, has seen its annual revenues triple to USD 330 million, driven by high demand for home deliveries during the COVID pandemic.
DoorDash Co-founder and CEO Tony Xu said in statement that “by joining forces, we believe we will accelerate our product development, bring greater focus to each of our markets, and improve the value we provide to consumers, merchants, as well as ‘Dashers’ and couriers around the world.”
Industry observers called the takeover a battle in the war to control Europe’s food delivery space. Once the deal is finalised in the first half of 2022, Wolt CEO Miki Kuusi will head DoorDash International.