Deliveroo launches London IPO after business surges in 2020


A courier for food delivery service Deliveroo rides a bike in central Brussels, Belgium January 16, 2020. Picture taken January 16, 2020. REUTERS/ Yves Herman/File Photo

LONDON (Reuters) - British food delivery firm Deliveroo announced plans to launch its hotly anticipated London listing on Monday after recording a surge in business during the COVID-19 pandemic, although it still posted a loss for 2020.

The initial public offering (IPO) is expected to value Deliveroo at more than $7 billion, based on a private funding round it completed in January, and will be one of the largest London listings in several years.

The company published a registration document and an expected "intention to float" -- which signals the start of the listing process -- on Monday, capping what has been a busy start to the London IPO season.

In an accompanying trading update, the company said it had grown the total number of transactions processed on its online platform, the so-called Gross Transaction Value, by 64.3% last year to 4.1 billion pounds from 2.5 billion in 2019.

It also narrowed an underlying loss to 223.7 million pounds ($308.93 million), from 317.3 million pounds in 2019.

"Today, Deliveroo is so much bigger than I ever would have thought possible," founder and chief executive Will Shu said in the trading update. "We are building delivery-only kitchens, delivering groceries, building tools for restaurants to take them into the digital age - things I never contemplated when we launched."

CLASS SYSTEM

The company confirmed it plans to use a dual-class share structure that will give Shu more control over the company.

This means it will have a "standard" listing upon entry into the London Stock Exchange, rather than a premium one, excluding it from the FTSE indices.

However, this could change if recommendations made in a recent review of listing rules by former EU Commissioner Jonathan Hill are implemented.

"It's obviously great news that Deliveroo, a global technology leader, born and bred in the UK, has chosen to list here," Hill said in a statement provided by Deliveroo. "The changes we recommended would make it easier for more companies to follow Deliveroo's lead, sending out a message that London is open for business."

Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan are joint global coordinators and bookrunners along with Bank of America, Citi, Jefferies and Numis.

($1 = 0.7239 pounds)

(Reporting by Simon Jessop; Editing by Rachel Armstrong, Kirsten Donovan)

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