Just Eat & Online Food Delivery in Spain | In Practise

Just Eat & Online Food Delivery in Spain

Former Head of Sales at Just Eat, Spain

Learning outcomes

  • How Glovo entered the Spanish market late but have 50% market share
  • The opportunities and risks of the top placement listing for Just Eat
  • How Uber or Deliveroo could challenge Just Eat for restaurant customers in the suburbs
  • Importance of driving density with restaurant brands like McDonald's
  • Risks to Just Eat's positioning in small and large cities
  • The breakeven drops per hour for vendors if they need to pay a third-party contractor like Mox for drivers
  • Potential winners and losers in the Spanish cities and suburbs
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Executive Bio

Jaume Boada

Former Head of Sales at Just Eat, Spain

Jaume has nearly 10 years of experience in the online food delivery market in Spain. He is the Current Head of Spain at Mox, Spain’s largest last-mile delivery company that delivers food for Just Eat, Uber, and Glovo, where he is responsible for dealing with the large vendors and hiring drivers. Jaume was previously Head of Sales for Just Eat in Spain where he was responsible for onboarding restaurants in small and large cities across Spain. Read more

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Could you please share some insight into your role and responsibilities at Just Eat?

I started working at Just Eat eight months after it was launched in Spain. The commercial structure consisted of a sales director and then four people – myself included – who were in Madrid, Valencia, Seville and Barcelona. We were selling directly to the restaurants, in those cities, as well as launching new cities, such as Bilbao, Palma de Mallorca, Murcia. After a year and a half, and with a stronger commercial structure, the company decided that there should be a regional sales manager for half of Spain, managing a team of seven people, organizing the launch of new cities and also selling directly to medium-sized restaurant chains, who had 20 to 30 restaurants.

In January 2017, the company appointed me as head of sales, managing a team of 14 people in the field as well as people in telephone positions. We managed to increase the offer of restaurants, launched in new cities and implemented new processes and established the company growth strategies.

What was Just Eat’s strategy, when they entered Spain?

During the launch, it was to achieve the largest possible offer of restaurants, with mixed cuisine. The offer brings the demand. It was very concentrated in large cities. At the same time, the other strategy was to make the brand as visible as possible. As there was no large marketing budget, part of the visibility was achieved with the stickers on the doors of restaurants, with the stickers being as large as possible. 25% of new users we achieved was due to the stickers on the restaurant doors.

At that time, the quality of the restaurants didn’t matter so much. The important thing was to attract new restaurants, that had their own delivery and the more motorcycles they had, the better. That meant that they were able to cope with a greater volume. We paid special attention to Chinese restaurants which were the ones with the most orders. At the same time, we began to scale, in various departments, depending on the needs. This was particularly relevant in the area of operations and customer care.

The commercial department looked for small delivery companies to deliver to restaurants who didn’t have their own delivery service. Finally, we started to think that Just Eat needed to have their own riders, in 2016. In the first years we had a big problem in Spain, because the Spanish restaurants don’t tend to have their own bikers. Eventually, the commercial department realized they had to find small companies to help us to contract with restaurants who don’t have their own delivery service.

So only a very small proportion of the restaurants in Spain actually had drivers themselves?

Yes. I can give you the example of Barcelona. When I joined Just Eat, in Barcelona, there were 150 restaurants making deliveries. Now there are more than 1,000 restaurants making deliveries in Barcelona. When we entered into the market, the big problem was that the restaurants were a bit fearful of Just Eat, because they thought we would steal users. They were used to receiving their orders by phone and they thought that we would steal these customers, so it was a bit difficult. The best way that the sales department could do it was to find a small delivery company that could help us to contract with restaurants who were not making their own delivery.

You mentioned how 150 restaurants in Barcelona actually delivered. Is that just a Spanish cultural thing?

Today, it’s more than 1,000.

Historically, it was 150 and is that just because of the Spanish culture, where delivery wasn’t really a thing, back then?

Correct. At that time, in Spain, the only restaurants that were making deliveries themselves were the pizzerias particularly, and then the Turkish and Chinese restaurants and the offer was very poor.

When you mentioned 1,000 in Barcelona who deliver today, for example, are they mainly delivering through courier services, rather than delivering themselves?

Currently, in Barcelona, for example, at least 600 restaurants are making deliveries and the rest are restaurants that are using fleet companies or they are using Just Eat.

Taking a step back, when you joined in 2011, who were the major players in the Spanish food delivery market?

Just Eat’s main competition was a Spanish company, called SinDelantal which operated in Spain and Mexico, which appeared in October 2012. This company had a philosophy and business strategy very similar to Just Eat. Another competitor was later acquired by Resto-in. They had a different business model from Just Eat. It only had high-quality restaurants, with a very high average ticket and they managed delivery. It was the closest thing to Deliveroo or Uber Eats. They operated in Madrid and Barcelona. Then there were small companies, like Food 2 U, which was acquired by Just Eat, but they were very local companies.

In 2012 and 2013, Just Eat tried to acquire these small competitors. Later, other companies appeared, such as La Nevera Roja, who were later acquired by Rocket Internet and, one year later, Just Eat acquired them.

How has Glovo got such a large market share when they joined relatively late to the market?

I’m going to tell you something about Glovo that almost no one knows. Glovo started as a delivery company, a fleet company, and worked for Just Eat at the beginning, delivering food from Just Eat restaurants that didn’t have their own bikers. Glovo’s success is based on several different factors. Firstly, product diversification; you could buy food, magazines, drinks, flowers. They carried many different kinds of products. At the same time, when Just Eat bought La Nevera Roja from Rocket Internet, Just Eat couldn’t sign restaurants exclusively and opened the market for Glovo.

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Just Eat & Online Food Delivery in Spain

August 13, 2020

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