Uber, Grubhub may exit merger talks due to antitrust concerns, report says


“A merger of Uber Eats and Grubhub would … raise serious competition issues in many markets around the country,” several Democratic lawmakers have said.

Angela Lang/CNET

Uber may exit merger talks with Grubhub amid antitrust concerns, according to a Wednesday report by CNBC. 

Democratic lawmakers expressed concern over the rumored deal between Uber and Grubhub last month in a letter signed by Sens. Amy Klobuchar, Patrick Leahy, Richard Blumenthal and Cory Booker. 

“A merger of Uber Eats and Grubhub would combine two of the three largest food delivery application providers and raise serious competition issues in many markets around the country,” the letter said. 

With restaurant dining rooms closed during the coronavirus pandemic, many consumers have looked to delivery and pickup services like Postmates, Uber Eats, DoorDash and Grubhub for their daily meals. In a survey of 1,000 DoorDash customers, conducted by the company in March, 56% said their takeout consumption had increased because of the pandemic.

“Consumers and restaurants are using these services more than ever, and the last thing they need is an increase in the extremely high fees already paid to these companies,” Klobuchar has said. “Protecting competition remains especially important as we continue to confront the financial impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.”

Uber has fallen into a tough financial situation amid the pandemic, prompting the ride-hailing company to cut 25% of its staff and close or consolidate about 45 offices worldwide. 

Grubhub is likely to merge with Netherlands-based Just Eat Takeaway.com and German Delivery Hero instead, according to CNBC. 

Just Eat Takeaway.com said in a release Wednesday that the company is in “advanced discussions with Grubhub” regarding the potential merger.

Neither Uber nor Grubhub immediately responded to requests for comment. 

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