Ex-CEO of Just Eat backs Egypt's food-order app elmenus

David Buttress joined the board of elmenus following an investment in the company

David Buttress, the former CEO of global food-ordering firm Just Eat, has invested in Egyptian food-delivery app elmenus and joined its board. Courtesy elmenus. 
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The former chief executive of Just Eat invested in Egypt's food-ordering app elmenus, as he looks to grab a share of the country's fast growing online food delivery market.

David Buttress, who led the London-based meal-delivery app for four years until 2017, has also joined elmenus' board, according to a statement by the Egyptian company on Monday. It did not disclose the size of the investment.

"Elmenus’ exponential growth this past year has been quite remarkable," Mr Buttress said. "It has been owning the food discovery approach, making it the stronger partner to restaurants as it provides them with more than just online ordering services."

The Cairo-based start-up, which has more than 1.5 million monthly users, has seen an uptick in demand during the Covid-19 pandemic as safety precautions and movement restrictions prompted more people to dine at home.

Elmenus' revenue growth tripled in 2020 as food deliveries increased and more restaurants outsourced their delivery operations, Mr Buttress said. The company is targeting to expand ten-fold this year as it boosts its product and restaurant offerings.

The start-up was founded in June 2011 as a catalogue of menus from restaurants and began delivering food through its online platform in late 2018.

Since then, it found success tapping into Egypt’s underserved online ordering market and has raised nearly $10 million in funding. This included a Series B round in 2020 – when it secured $8m – led by UAE-based venture capital firm Global Ventures and Egypt's Algebra Ventures.

Amir Allam, chief executive of elmenus, said he hoped that Mr Buttress will "play a vital role in accelerating our growth and guiding elmenus in acquiring a significant share of the market".

Egypt's online food delivery segment is expected to generate $99m in revenue this year, according to Statista.

Mr Buttress is currently a partner at London-based venture capital firm 83 North.

In the next 18 months, elmenus plans to expand its market share, recruit 4,000 new drivers and add more restaurants to its platform.