In the early 2000s in New York and Chicago, two groups of people had the same idea: What if we could order takeout online? In New York, this idea formed into Seamless. In Chicago, it became Grubhub.
At the time, ordering food was a hassle. People were restricted by what menus they had lying about, and paying by card meant reading out numbers on the phone.
Grubhub and Seamless both changed that by uploading restaurant menus online and storing card information, making the process a lot easier. Both charged restaurants 10 percent commission for every order, although that has since risen to more than 30 percent in some cases.
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For the first decade, Grubhub and Seamless dominated in their respective markets, but began to encroach on each other’s in the early 2010s as food delivery started to take off. In 2013, the two companies agreed to merge, creating a powerhouse that controlled 70 percent of takeout orders.
As the two merged, a new form of food delivery was beginning to emerge in California, led by Postmates, DoorDash and Uber Eats. Instead of simply aggregating takeaways, these new platforms provided delivery service for restaurant, at a higher commission.
Grubhub CEO Matt Maloney called this “the dumbest business you could ever be in”, as it offered razor-thin margins even with 30 percent commission. But, due to stock market pressure, Grubhub decided to start providing delivery service to some restaurants.
Grubhub still generates most of its revenue through non-delivery orders, however it has become a larger part of the business. In 2019, the company posted its first ever yearly loss, which Maloney blamed on delivery services and the competitive market.
Since 2015, Grubhub has steadily lost marketshare in the US, as Uber Eats and DoorDash claimed more users. From a high of 70 percent, Grubhub sits at less than 20 percent marketshare in 2020, behind DoorDash at 45 percent and Uber Eats (with Postmates) at 30 percent.
Even with this loss of marketshare, Grubhub has continued to generate more revenue every year since going public. It has climbed from $500 million in 2016 to $1.8 billion in 2020.
Grubhub has, like most food delivery apps in the US, had its fair share of controversy. It has been criticised for setting up phony websites of local businesses and earning commission from routed phone calls, which may have not ended in a purchase.
In 2020, Uber approached Grubhub with an acquisition offer, after failing to acquire DoorDash. At the same time, Just Eat Takeaway launched a $7.1 billion bid, which Grubhub accepted in June 2020.
The acquisition adds a new source of funding for Grubhub to continue competing with DoorDash and Uber Eats in the low-margin market of food delivery. But, due to the downturn in tech stocks, Just Eat Takeaway has been exploring a sale of the unit.
We have collected data and statistics on Grubhub. To find out more, read on below.
Grubhub key statistics
- Grubhub generated $2.1 billion revenue in 2021, a 16% increase year-on-year
- Its gross transaction volume also reached $9.7 billion in that time
- Grubhub had 33.8 million active users, who use the app at least once a month
- Over 300,000 restaurants in 4,000 cities are partnered with Grubhub
Food Delivery App Report 2022
Want to learn more about the food delivery app industry? Our food delivery app report includes breakdowns of all of the top apps by revenue, GMV and orders, alongside regional market share statistics, usage, and downloads.
|People||Matthew Maloney (co-founder, CEO), Adam DeWitt (President, CFO), Maria Belousova (CTO)|
|Parent company||Just Eat Takeaway|
Grubhub made $2.1 billion revenue in 2021, the first year it was incorporated into Just Eat Takeaway.
Grubhub annual revenue 2010 to 2021 ($mm)
Note: Grubhub merged with Seamless in 2013. Sources: Company data, Food Delivery App Report, TechCrunch
Grubhub has over 30 million active customers, who purchase through the app once a month.
Grubhub annual users 2013 to 2021 (mm)
Source: Company data, Food Delivery App Report
Grubhub made close to $10 billion in gross transaction volume in 2021, an 11% increase on the previous year.
Grubhub annual gross transaction volume 2013 to 2021 ($bn)
|Year||Gross transaction volume ($bn)|
Source: Company data
Grubhub completed over 300 million orders in 2021, a 36% annual increase.
Grubhub annual orders 2013 to 2021 (mm)
Source: Company data
There were 324,000 restaurants and other services partnered with Grubhub in 2021.
Grubhub annual partnered restaurants 2013 to 2021
Source: Company data
Grubhub and Seamless are available in over 4,000 cities in the US and Canada.
Grubhub available cities 2013 to 2020
Source: Company data
Grubhub was valued by Just Eat Takeaway at $7.1 billion in 2020, when it acquired the delivery platform.
Grubhub valuation 2014 to 2020 ($bn)
Sources: LinkedIn, Pitchbook, Business Insider
Grubhub market share vs competitors
Want to learn more? Check out our food delivery report
How many people deliver food for Grubhub?
Over 65,000 people delivery food for Grubhub
How many people do Grubhub employ?
Grubhub employ 2,750 full time staff to work on the website and app
What is Grubhub and Seamless’ marketshare in New York?
According to Recode, 90 percent of food deliveries are made by Grubhub or Seamless in the state (Recode)
Where does Grubhub hold the most marketshare in the US?
Alongside New York, Philadelphia, Chicago, Boston and Jacksonville all prefer Grubhub
How much did Just Eat Takeaway pay for Grubhub?
Grubhub was acquired by Just Eat Takeaway for $7.1 billion
More Delivery App Data
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- Getir Revenue and Usage Statistics (2023)
- Just Eat Revenue and Usage Statistics (2023)
- Instacart Revenue and Usage Statistics (2023)
- Gorillas Revenue and Usage Statistics (2023)
- Postmates Revenue and Usage Statistics (2023)
- GoPuff Revenue and Usage Statistics (2023)
- DoorDash Revenue and Usage Statistics (2023)