Photographer: Joseph Eid/AFP via Getty Images

Delivery Hero Buys Middle East Web Food Service for $589 Million

Delivery Hero Holding GmbH said it’s buying for $589 million in cash and shares to tap the market for online food deliveries in Turkey and expand its business in countries such as the United Arab Emirates and Qatar.

Yemeksepeti’s investors, which include General Atlantic LLC, become Delivery Hero shareholders as part of the deal, the Berlin-based company said in a statement Tuesday. Nevzat Aydin, co-founder and chief executive officer of Yemeksepeti, will continue to lead the company and join Delivery Hero’s supervisory board.

The deal, which also adds operations in Middle Eastern countries such as Saudi Arabia and Lebanon, is the largest so far in the online food-ordering industry, Delivery Hero said. Rocket Internet AG, the German e-commerce company that had an initial public offering last year, accumulated a 40 percent stake in Delivery Hero this year, including a transaction in February that valued Delivery Hero at $1.9 billion.

Yemeksepeti, which was founded 15 years ago, processes more than 3 million deliveries a month, is profitable and its business is growing about 60 percent a year, according to the statement. That takes Delivery Hero to more than 10 million monthly orders, it said.

The transaction bolsters Delivery Hero’s business in the Middle East, after the company acquired regional provider Talabat in March. Delivery Hero also has food-ordering websites for Europe, South America, Australia, China and South Korea.

GrubHub Inc. and Just Eat Plc, Delivery Hero’s publicly traded peers in the U.S. and U.K, are valued at $3.3 billion and 2.6 billion pounds ($3.9 billion) respectively.

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