Food delivery app DoorDash is preparing to launch in Germany, in what will be the US market leader’s first foray into the rapidly crowded European delivery app market.
The company shared 15 job postings on Monday seeking to fill management, strategy and recruitment positions in Berlin. It is not yet clear when it plans to launch.
The move will follow Uber, which in April told the Financial Times that it would bring its food service Uber Eats to Germany in a “few weeks”, beginning in Berlin.
Earlier this month, Delivery Hero, which had sold its German business to Just Eat Takeaway in 2018, said it would re-enter the country under its Foodpanda brand. Finland’s Wolt has also recently entered the market.
The new players threaten to disrupt the historical dominance of Just Eat Takeaway, which had the German market almost to itself for the past two years.
“Competition makes us stronger,” said Jitse Groen, Just Eat Takeaway’s chief executive, in a tweet last week reacting to the news of Delivery Hero’s return.
DoorDash declined to comment on the job postings or the company’s expansion plans in Germany. “We continually assess expansion opportunities as we aim to further build our international presence,” it said.
DoorDash has been expected to mount a broader push into Europe, including the UK. The FT has previously reported the company was looking at acquisition targets in Europe, while the job posting for Germany’s general manager asks for someone who can “develop a playbook” for “faster” entry into other markets.
It is not clear which employment model DoorDash would seek to use in Germany, where stricter employment laws means the gig worker set-up it uses in the US would not be permitted.
One of the positions advertised, for a head of policy and government relations, asks for a person familiar with the “political and regulatory environment in Germany and at the EU-level”.
Last month, Uber told the FT its food couriers in Berlin would be employed by fleet management companies, similar to minicab groups, who are contracted by Uber and get paid per order. It is then up to the fleet managers to decide how to retain and pay workers.
DoorDash is the largest US food delivery app market, with about 55 per cent of the market nationally, according to data from Edison Trends based on sales during the last week of April. Uber Eats has 31 per cent, while Grubhub, soon to be owned by Just Eat Takeaway, pending shareholder approval, has 13 per cent.
DoorDash is also increasingly delivering other types of goods. Last week, it said about 7 per cent of its total orders were now for convenience items such as toiletries, flowers or alcohol. As well as picking up from existing stores, such as 7-Eleven, it also runs a network of more than 25 “Dashmarts”, warehouses from which couriers can pick up items for quick delivery.
If it seeks to emulate this model in the German market, it will be competing against the likes of Gorillas and Flink, two rapid delivery apps based in Berlin. Istanbul’s Getir, a similar app, is planning to launch in Berlin soon.