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Next's Lord Wolfson joins Deliveroo board ahead of its float

Lauretta Roberts
19 January 2021

Next CEO Lord Simon Wolfson has joined the board of food delivery platform Deliveroo ahead of its IPO.

Wolfson, who has been leading Next since 2001, joined Deliveroo as non-executive director this week as the business gears up for what is expected to be one of the biggest floats of the year.

This weekend Deliveroo revealed it had secured $180m (£132m) in further backing taking its valuation to more than $7bn.

Deliveroo has been one of the winners of the pandemic with food retailers and hospitality businesses joining its platform to offer home delivery as consumers are urged to stay at home. Grocer Waitrose joined Deliveroo last year enabling customers to order up to £75 worth of groceries from around 100 product lines to be delivered to their homes within an hour.

The platform's founder and chief executive Will Shu said of Wolfson's appointment: “We are looking forward to working with him as we continue to innovate, developing new tech tools to support restaurants, to provide riders with more work and to extend choice for customers, bringing them the food they love from more restaurants than ever before.”

Next, too, has proved to be a resilient performer during the pandemic reporting better than expected sales over Christmas and saying that it now expects to post annual profits of £370m for the year to the end of January, against the £365m guidance it had previously set.

The fashion chain is also said to be the front runner to acquire Topshop, the jewel in the crown of Sir Philip Green's collapsed fashion empire Arcadia, in a joint bid with US investor Davidson Kempner. Bids were due in for the Arcadia brands yesterday.

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