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“They pirated my business”: Restaurant owner cries foul after appearing on delivery app

Multiple restaurants recently appeared on the food delivery app Grubhub without notice, according to multiple business owners.

“It’s infuriating,” said Jeff Spencer, the owner of Just Jeff’s. “I feel like they pirated my business.”

On Saturday, Spencer said, the restaurant got an order through the app after turning down an offer to partner with Grubhub about two weeks ago. Despite the denial from Just Jeff’s, Grubhub listed the restaurant and welcomed users to order food for delivery.

“That food sat for 45 minutes waiting for the driver to get here to pick it up,” he said.

Grubhub acknowledged the listing of Just Jeff’s, as well as its lack of partnership with the restaurant in a statement to ABC 17 News. A company spokesperson said Grubhub began listing non-partnered restaurants in recent months.

“Starting in late 2019 in select cities across the country, we’ll add restaurants to our marketplace when we see local diner demand for delivery so the restaurant can receive more orders and revenue from deliveries completed by our drivers.”

Grubhub spokesperson

The spokesperson added that other delivery services are listing restaurants without establishing an agreement with

“As other food delivery companies have chosen to list non-partnered restaurants on their marketplaces for years to widen their supply of restaurants, we’re now trying this strategy in select markets as a way to close the restaurant supply gap and drive more delivery orders to local restaurants.”

Grubhub Spokesperson

Olga Morris said her business, Culver’s, was also listed on the app without warning. She called the practice “shady.”

“They should not be listing restaurants that are not approved for partnerships without permission or at least a heads-up,” Morris said.

Spencer said he decided against working with a delivery service to focus on the customers that drive to and through Just Jeff’s.

“Those are my customers. Those are the customers that I want to make sure have the best experience every time that they come,” Spencer said. “I don’t think, in any way shape and form, (Grubhub) should be able to practice business like this.”

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