Doordash, GrubHub, UberEats all leave a bad taste.

Doordash and Pizza Arbitrage – Margins by Ranjan Roy and Can Duruk:

In March 2019 a good friend who owns a few pizza restaurants messaged me (this friend has made appearances in prior Margins’ pieces). For over a decade, he resisted adding delivery as an option for his restaurants. He felt it would detract from focusing on the dine-in experience and result in trying to compete with Domino’s.

But he had suddenly started getting customers calling in with complaints about their deliveries.

Customers called in saying their pizza was delivered cold. Or the wrong pizza was delivered and they wanted a new pizza.

Again, none of his restaurants delivered.

He realized that a delivery option had mysteriously appeared on their company’s Google Listing. The delivery option was created by Doordash.

This is a lovely little revenge tale, but it highlights two huge problems. First, that the food delivery business is completely out of whack with the economics of the service and the result is shady practices. Second, capitalism isn’t meant to work this way. Bloomberg commentator Matt Levine calls is “counterfeit capitalism,” and that’s right. 

Capitalism is meant to allow people to add value to society. These companies do the opposite, and I, for one, want no part.