Pick us, Prosus urges Just Eat shareholders

Prosus has appealed to food delivery group Just Eat to accept its offer and reject that of rival Takeaway.com, which it branded risky.

Prosus NV, the new Naspers-owned [JSE:NPN] global digital company, made a hostile bid for the UK-based company in October, Fin24 previously reported. The offer valued Just Eat at £4.9bn or R93bn.

Prosus already owns several food delivery businesses, including Swiggy, iFood and Delivery Hero.

It urged Just Eat to accept its cash offer by December 11.

"Prosus believes that Takeaway.com takes a narrow view of the Food Delivery sector based principally on its experience in the Netherlands and Germany – markets that have so far been relatively insulated from innovative global own-delivery competitors," Prosus said in a statement on the JSE Stock Exchange News Service on Wednesday.

The Takeaway.com offer held "significant risks" for Just Eat shareholders, it added.

In particular, it said Takeaway.com's offer underestimated the transformation Just Eat needed and the investment required. It argued that Just Eat would be competing with major players in the UK, like Uber Eats and Deliveroo.

"In the absence of required investment, Prosus believes that Just Eat's operational underperformance is likely to continue, putting the combined valuation under pressure," the statement said.

"We are excited about the prospect of adding Just Eat to our portfolio of leading global Food Delivery businesses and believe we are best positioned to address both the market opportunity and the challenges facing the company," said Prosus CEO Bob van Dijk.

Just Eat has 27 million customers and 107 000 participating restaurants in the UK, Australia, France, Brazil and other markets. It was founded in Denmark in 2001 by five entrepreneurs and listed on the London Stock Exchange. Last year, the group processed almost R80bn in orders.

Takeaway.com published its offer document on Wednesday, but the terms have remained unchanged since August.

Compiled by Marelise van der Merwe. 

Fin24 is part of 24.com, a division of Media24, which is a subsidiary of Naspers.

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