Delivery Hero’s stock-picking boss

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The Delivery Hero headquarters is pictured in Berlin, Germany, August 18, 2020. REUTERS/Fabrizio Bensch

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LONDON, Aug 26 (Reuters Breakingviews) - Delivery Hero (DHER.DE) Chief Executive Niklas Oestberg may be having more luck as a stock picker than boss of a profitable food delivery outfit. The 31 billion euro company said on Thursday that revenue in the first six months of the year surged 157% to 2.5 billion euros. However, net losses for the period more than doubled to 918 million euros, within touching distance of the 1 billion-plus euros it lost in the whole of last year.

Rather than focusing on turning this around, Oestberg has been distracted by dabbling in his rivals. This month, he revealed a 5.1% stake in Britain’s Deliveroo (ROO.L), on top of stakes in listed competitors Just Eat (TKWY.AS), India’s Zomato (ZOMT.NS) and other startups. Deliveroo shares are now up a quarter from the average 270 pence price that Oestberg says he paid for the stock. His own investors are less impressed. Delivery Hero shares are down 4% since the stake was announced. If his current career doesn’t work out, Oestberg may at least have an alternative one as a fund manager. (By Karen Kwok)

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Editing by Ed Cropley and Oliver Taslic

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