Waitr, one of the few public delivery companies (for now), just released some mixed, but mostly rosy, results from the first quarter of 2019.
The big numbers, revenue and active diners, both rocketed skyward. Revenue was up 287 percent over last year and its active diners, the measure of users in the system, rose by 309 percent. That, of course, came from its still-fresh acquisition of Bite Squad.
“We kicked off the year with the acquisition of Bite Squad, an online ordering and food delivery platform, more than doubling the size of our company with one acquisition,” said CEO Chris Meaux during the earnings call. “We are thrilled to welcome Bite Squad into the Waitr family and have spent time since the acquisition getting to know their team and diligently beginning the integration process of combining the two companies.”
Gross food sales grew 215 percent to $170.4 million in the first quarter, up $70.4 million on the acquisition. The acquisition also brought in 1.1 million new diners, bringing the total to 2.2 million, up significantly from 541,900 in 2018.
So clearly, it’s more than a double-up based solely on the acquisition. Meaux said the company achieved significant organic growth as well.
As of Q1, the combination of the two companies serves more than 600 cities in 80 market areas across 30 states.
“We solidify our dominance in underserved markets including the addition of 109 new cities, added experienced leaders to round out our leadership team,” said Meaux.
But the losses did add up. For the first quarter, the company lost $9.9 million, compared to a $2.1 million loss in 2018.
The stock results were volatile around the report due to an earnings-per-share of -38 cents compared with the estimated consensus of -19 cents. But it beat revenue estimates by $2.6 million. The stock price rose at one point more than 10 percent before settling in at $9.30, slightly below the $10 to $12 range the company has been trading.
But don’t expect the company to stay flat through the year. Meaux said the quarter ended with plenty in the bank, finishing “the year with the balance sheet that included over $200 million in cash setting the stage for future organic growth and acquisitions in 2019.”