Deliveroo France to face court over ‘undeclared labour’

Deliveroo France to face court over 'undeclared labour'
Photo: JACQUES DEMARTHON / AFP.
Takeaway food app Deliveroo and three former directors will appear in a Paris court on charges of "undeclared labour" next year, a source close to the cases said on Monday.

Deliveroo France, an ex-managing director and two other former senior staff have been summoned to the Paris criminal court from March 8-16 to answer the charges dating back to 2015-2017 of “not declaring a large number of jobs”, said the source.

The British group Deliveroo has enjoyed a dazzling international ride in a short space of time but faces questions over its sustainability, highlighted by a poor stock market debut in London this year.

French prosecutors suspected Deliveroo had “recourse to thousands of workers under a claimed independent status”, the source added.

Deliveroo France issued a statement saying it had operated “in a totally transparent fashion” and “in strict respect of legal dispositions”.

In London, Deliveroo’s initial public offering in March was the biggest stock market launch for a decade, valuing the group at £7.6 billion ($10.4 billion), after the eight-year-old company enjoyed surging sales during coronavirus lockdowns.

But its share price tumbled on launch day by almost a third as investors questioned Deliveroo’s treatment of its self-employed riders.

The company announced plans at the end of July to exit Spain after Madrid approved a labour law reform that recognises delivery riders as staff, meaning they must be provided with social benefits such as paid holidays and sick leave.

Deliveroo said “achieving a top-tier market position” in Spain “would require a disproportionate level of investment with highly uncertain long-term potential returns”.

Its riders in the UK meanwhile recently lost a bid to join a British union as the UK Court of Appeal ruled that they are self-employed.


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