AmRest Invests in Spanish Delivery Startup Glovo

(Bloomberg) -- AmRest Holdings SE, a Polish restaurant group, is expanding its bet on delivery technology by investing in Spanish startup Glovo.

Amrest will invest 25 million euros ($29 million) for a 10 percent stake in Glovo, following a 115 million-euro funding round, according to a statement from the Warsaw-based restaurant operator. This was Glovo’s largest funding transaction to date.

Glovo, founded in 2015 and also available in Rome, Milan and Paris, offers users an app to order food and other local goods. The funding round offers the company, which is facing growing pressure from the likes of Uber Eats and Deliveroo in its home market, the resources to seek further expansion abroad.

Idinvest Partners and GR Capital also became investors in Glovo while Japanese e-commerce operator Rakuten Inc. and venture capitals Seaya Ventures and Cathay Innovation SAS, which were already investors, also participated, according to a separate statement from Glovo.

Food delivery apps are attracting increasing investment. SoftBank Group Corp.’s Vision Fund in March led a $535 million investment in the San Francisco-based DoorDash Inc. Deliveroo is one of Europe’s biggest startups, and recently raised about $480 million from investors including Fidelity and T. Rowe Price.

The deal helps AmRest strengthen its position, “not only in traditional restaurant business but also in food e-commerce industry," according to a Erste Group Bank note to clients. “Glovo would not only give an access to deliver AmRest’s food but should also provide a valuable insight on rapidly developing food e-commerce market."

AmRest, which brought American fast food to Poland after the fall of communism, is the operator of Pizza Hut, Kentucky Fried Chicken and Starbucks outlets in eastern Europe. It has recently been developing a foothold in food-related, technological companies. In 2017 it acquired a 51 percent stake in Delivery Hero Poland.

AmRest is already familiar with the Spanish market, where it is present through Italian-cuisine restaurant chain La Tagliatella and the KFC franchise. On Tuesday it acquired Bacoa, the premium burger restaurant network in Spain, the company said in a regulatory filing Tuesday.

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