It was not always peaceful between the delivery service competitors Pizza.de from Braunschweig and Delivery Hero from Berlin. Copied records, penalties – there were negative headlines on a few occasions. Such feuds should now belong to the past, as Pizza.de now is a part of Delivery Hero.
In an interview, CEO Niklas Östberg talks on which other competitors Delivery Hero looked at for an acquisition, how both companies will change, and how he wants to compete with the international player Just Eat.
Niklas, with Pizza.de, Delivery Hero has caught one of the top dogs. Is the deal a reaction to the takeover of Lieferando by Takeaway.com?
We were also talking to Lieferando. There was almost going to be a deal there. In the end, Pizza.de was our preference. At that time, it was almost unsaleable. That luckily changed.
Why did your Lieferando deal not work out?
Takeaway made an offer that we did not want to go along with.
It is said in the scene that Pizza.de cost €290 million. Is that true?
Unfortunately, I can’t say more on the details of the deal. Everything that was written about the selling price was pure speculation.
Cofounder Jochen Grote is leaving Pizza.de, and you will be the new CEO in Braunschweig. What will be your role there?
In the next few months, I will work hard with the team in Braunschweig to develop a strategy. However, in the long-term, I will not be able to look after the operations of Pizza.de due to time constraints. It is still too early to determine who will take over these responsibilities. In the short-term, it is more important for me to meet the people and learn the processes. I think both companies have huge potential through growth synergies.
As a rule, synergies also mean reductions, since almost all processes are existing in double…
We don’t see it that way at the moment. We want to continue growing, so we are actually looking for new employees rather than thinking we have too many. We need to figure out how we can combine the strengths of both companies in order to give our customers the best service.
What do you think the greatest benefits will be?
Knowledge transfer is a big one. We learned a lot at Delivery Hero over the years, and Pizza.de is a pioneer in our business and established a great position in the market. One concrete example of the “best of teamwork”: With 9Cookies, we created an excellent POS system for restaurants, and Pizza.de developed its own excellent tracking solution.
What does Pizza.de have that Delivery Hero does not?
The strengths of Pizza.de are not intended to compensate for perceived gaps or weaknesses in Delivery Hero. It is rather that we benefit as a whole company in all areas from such a strong partner. One of the major strengths of Pizza.de is having a very big and loyal fan base. With that comes a great service, an experienced team, and last but not least its software.
Will Delivery Hero grow now increasingly through acquisitions? Recently there were many takeovers in Latin America.
Our focus is still on organic growth. But sometimes an acquisition makes sense. We usually buy smaller companies. They are cheaper and are valuable to enter into a new market. Pizza.de was the exception here.
To be market leader in Germany.
It is really important to be number one in your home country. At the moment, I can’t think of any international, influential internet company that is not market leader in its own country.
Read the full article on Gruenderszene.
Image Credit: Delivery Hero
Translated by: Elena Rueckert