Waitr’s preliminary 2018 financials show explosive growth after acquisitions

Photo courtesy of Nasdaq
Waitr employees gather at the opening Nasdaq bell

The gist: Preliminary 2018 financials show incredible growth both in Waitr’s existing operations and those associated with Bite Squad, a midwestern competitor the food delivery company bought last year.

On Waitr’s existing business alone, it showed significant growth:

$279 million in food sales
$69 million in revenue to Waitr
200 percent revenue growth
($35 million) net loss
($14 million) adjusted EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization)

Waitr’s losses aren’t necessarily a bad thing. Startups tend to run on investment capital, operate at a loss and focus on growth rather than profit. Waitr’s losses are trending in the right direction: The ratio of losses to revenue is dropping. Waitr management has told some investors the company could break even if it slowed its aggressive expansion strategy. At some point, the company will need to post profits, but so long as it has investment capital to fund growth that point might not come for a while.

Acquisition is a key strategy for the company. The addition of Bite Squad’s business to Waitr’s books doubled the company’s revenue and footprint:

$255 million in food sales
$83 million in revenue to Bite Squad

The two companies combined to produce the following results in 2018:

$534 million in combined food sales
$152 million in combined revenue
Serving 500 cities

On March 7 at 4 p.m., Waitr will release its final audited financial results on an investor call.

$11.95 is the price of Waitr’s stock at noon today. That’s down from $12.21 at close on Monday when these results were released. So far Waitr’s growth appears to be having a limited impact on its stock price.

Waitr also announced six new executives. Four are coming from Bite Squad — one to replace Waitr’s retiring CFO and three to fill the positions of chief legal officer, chief of corporate development and head of growth. Two others were poached from Homer Logistics, a New York City-based company that optimizes last-mile delivery. These two fill new positions, chief logistics officer and chief analytics officer.

Celebrate Waitr’s new Downtown headquarters in the old Lemoine building at the Waitr Day Block Party Friday, Feb. 15, from 3-6 p.m. at the 200 block of Jefferson St. Put on by Louisiana Economic Development, Lafayette Economic Development Authority, Downtown Development Authority and Waitr, this free event will feature music by Geno Delafose, gift card giveaways, food, kid games and more.

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About the Author

Geoff Daily created FiberCorps and helped launch the Lafayette General Foundation. He now works as a launch strategist.

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