Delivery start-up Deliveroo raises £285m Series F to hit $2bn valuation

The Startups 100-ranked gig economy business, which was only launched in 2013, has been backed by US investors Fidelity and T Rowe Price

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Deliveroo, the Startups 100-ranked food delivery start-up, has raised £285m in a Series F funding round to hit a valuation of $2bn (£1.48bn).

Backed by US fund managers T. Rowe Price and Fidelity, as well as existing investors DST Global, General Catalyst, Index Ventures, and Accel Partners, this latest injection of cash also suggests the four-year-old start-up is looking to go public in the near future.

Founded by Young Guns William Shu and Greg Orlowski and launched in London in 2013, Deliveroo has raised $857m (£635m) across six rounds to date and now operates in over 35 UK cities and 40 cities internationally.

The gig economy start-up, which relies heavily on immigrant delivery drivers, will use the fresh funds to invest in three separate areas of the business.

The first area will be its “Editions” programme, previously called Roobox, which will help its partner restaurants to expand without the traditional high cost – by opening delivery-only kitchens and optimising delivery times.

Secondly, Devliveroo will drive its recruitment process with special emphasis placed on its technology teams who work on its real-time logistics algorithm and artificial intelligence systems to speed up delivery times and find out what dishes are most popular in a particular area.

Finally, it will look to expand into more regional cities and towns across the globe.

Speaking back in August 2016, Shu said his top piece of advice for would-be entrepreneurs is simple: start something that you’re “super passionate” about, and don’t settle for anything less.

Reflecting on his time in banking, Shu said that some of his peers in the financial sector would try to start their own businesses, but only work on their start-up at the weekends or when they had some time off from their regular job.

This model, for Shu, isn’t enough and he urges that start-ups need  “go completely all in” or their business idea won’t get off the ground.

How much money has Devliveroo raised to date?

Deliveroo has raised over $857m (£635m) across six rounds so far:

  • Series A round worth £2.75m in June 2014
  • Series B round worth £16.55m in January 2015
  • Series C round worth $70m in July 2015
  • Series D round worth $100m in November 2015
  • Series E round worth $275m in August 2016
  • Series F round worth £285m in September 2017

In a statement, Shu spoke about his journey from starting his own business just four years ago – to now heading up a $2bn-valued start-up unicorn:

“I remember how excited I was carrying out our first delivery. I hoped that people would love being able to order great food from their favourite local restaurants straight to their front door.

“I am proud that just four years on, millions of people use Deliveroo in over 150 cities around the world.

“This is all thanks to the hard work of our riders, the great restaurants that we work with and our brilliant customers.

“So I am extremely pleased that our new investors share this vision and have decided to make such a significant investment in our future.

“With this funding we will invest further in our delivery-only kitchens Editions, in developing our technology and in taking Deliveroo to more towns and cities.

“This investment will take us to the next level and allow our riders to deliver ever more great food directly to people’s doors.”

Henry Ellenbogen, portfolio manager at T. Rowe Price New Horizons Fund, said in a statement:

“Deliveroo has built an impressive service that is providing fast delivery of high quality food in over 150 cities across the world.

“We believe they have a world class team, strong technology capabilities, and the right business model.

“We are excited to see this capital put to use to build out their Editions concept and expand their geographic footprint.”

Interested in starting your own delivery or courier business? Read our free advice guide here. 

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