Just Eat has laid off 1,700 delivery workers as the takeaway boom comes to an end

Just Eat Takeaway plans to lay off up to 1,700 drivers in order for the company’s post-pandemic slowdown.

Bosses have said that they informed affected workers on Tuesday morning. Delivery drivers were offered six weeks notice and pay. 170 Just Eat employees working full-time within the operations team will also be affected by this shakeup.

The £3.5bn food delivery business, which is listed in London & Amsterdam, is trying to reduce spending as take-out order numbers plummet post-pandemic, and families struggle with the cost of living.

The company reported that total customer numbers declined by 9 percent in 2022. However, rising inflation means diners spend about 3 percentage points more on average.

Just Eat shares have dropped by approximately 15pc and is trading at around 85pc below their peak during the pandemic. Pre-tax losses increased to EUR5.7bn (£5bn), from EUR1bn in 2013. This was due to one-off costs relating to the purchase of rival Grubhub, and the merger between Just Eat and Takeaway.com.

Just Eat, which tried to distinguish itself from other “gig economy” competitors like Deliveroo, offered predictable wages and sick pay for riders. It said it would stop the employment model in six British cities under the shakeup.

A Just Eat spokesperson stated that Just Eat UK was reorganizing and simplifying its delivery operations in the pursuit of efficiency. We have suggested that we transition away from the worker-model for couriers as part of this process. This is only a small portion of our overall delivery operations and can be found in six UK cities. The service offered to customers and partners will not be affected.

“Our number one priority is now to support affected employees and couriers. We are extremely grateful to all our talented colleagues, couriers and others who have contributed to the worker model in the UK.

According to reports, the company will replace agency workers with independent drivers who can access an app similar to Deliveroo. Agency workers are only believed to make up a small portion of UK delivery drivers.

Just Eat will continue to hire workers for hourly wages in other countries. Many European countries have passed legislation to grant delivery couriers greater employment rights.

Just Eat executives believe that hiring workers in the UK, which can come with additional costs like holiday pay, meant that it faced higher costs to deliver takeaways than its main competitors.

Unions have failed to improve the rights of UK food delivery couriers. judges are upholding their status as freelancers . Deliveroo is the main UK competitor to Just Eat. It treats its riders like self-employed.

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