Thursday 21 September 2017

Chippers make comeback as online orders jump 60pc at justeat.ie

Amanda Roche Kelly from justeat.ie Photo: Gerry Mooney
Amanda Roche Kelly from justeat.ie Photo: Gerry Mooney
Sarah McCabe

Sarah McCabe

JUSTEAT.IE's revenues have grown by 60pc in the past year as hungry students downloaded the takeaway ordering app in droves.

In the same way Hailo and Uber have transformed the taxi industry, Justeat is disrupting the traditional takeaway model. Two-thirds of all takeaway orders are now made online, the company said.

St Valentine's Day was its second busiest day of the year, according to chief executive Amanda Roche Kelly (above), formerly of Irish Distillers.

New Year's Day was its busiest. "Weather is a massive influence too. Business clearly spikes when it rains and winter is peak season for us" she said.

'Recovery eating' was evident in a spike in orders after Electric Picnic, where the company is entering its second year of a major sponsorship deal.

Justeat.ie was founded in Denmark 12 years ago and now operates in 13 countries. Ireland is its third most successful after the UK and Denmark. It went public last year, floating on the London Stock Exchange.

It has signed up 1,600 Irish restaurants including a smattering of chains such as Pizzahut, Four Star Pizza and Diep. It has channelled €30m worth of orders to restaurants in the past year, it claims. The past year was its most successful since setting up in Ireland in 2008.

The company employs 41 people in Ireland, half of them in call centre roles. It is headquartered at Parnell Street in Dublin 1. Its revenues come from commission on takeaway orders.

"Our biggest competitor is still the phone," said Kelly. "Irish consumers are very accustomed to picking up the telephone to order food. But mobile is our fastest growing source of business.

"The Justeat.ie app has been downloaded 300,000 times since it was rolled out last October and two-fifths of our orders are now made through it. We are rolling out a tracking service with which users can track their food in real time.

"People are so much more likely to come back to your business if they have downloaded your app," she added. "It is there on their phone constantly, like an advertisement."

The traditional chipper is making a comeback, Kelly said. "Chippers are very popular with students and we have a massive student customer base.

"Our average age is increasing though as we add healthy food and lunch staples. Corporate takeaways and Mexican are growing fast and we have added vegan, gluten-free and paleo options."

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