Berlin — The express delivery service Flink was on the verge of bankruptcy, and now 150 million euros are reportedly flowing into the Berlin-based company as part of emergency financing. Rewe and other investors injected fresh capital into the company, as first reported by Manager Magazin. To date, the round has been steered by existing investors, including the US delivery service Doordash and the supermarket chain Rewe. Rewe is also said to be leading the current financing with more than 50 million euros. In the process, the valuation, which not long ago was 2.5 billion euros, has fallen considerably. As a result, investors now value the delivery service at only around one billion euros.
Tension behind the scenes with Mubadala
One of the most important shareholders is no longer involved: the sovereign wealth fund Mubadala from Abu-Dhabi was not only one of the major investors in Flink, but also one of the largest shareholders in its competitor Getir and would benefit from a merger of its investments.
With the current funding, Mubadala is unlikely to have been willing to provide further capital to Flink as a standalone company. The state fund is no longer involved in the 150 million round.
Steady staff reductions
It had already become apparent during the takeover of the Berlin-based adversary Gorillas by the Turkish company Getir that the express delivery services would be facing difficult times after the end of the pandemic. None of the providers was able to deliver signals that they would soon be profitable. Even massive staff cuts apparently did not bring sufficient relief — according to research by Manager Magazin, more than 8,000 employees at Flink alone are said to have lost their jobs in the past year.
Now comes another drastic step to cut costs. Nevertheless, Flink CEO and co-founder Oliver Merkel has apparently enticed investors to cut costs even further. Around one hundred of the approximately 600 employees are to be laid off, as reported by Manager Magazin.
In order to make itself leaner for potential investors, Flink filed for insolvency for its Austrian subsidiary at the end of 2022. At the time, the company explained that the region would not be profitable in the foreseeable future. More than 160 people — both drivers and office employees — lost their jobs at that time. Expansion into other countries is not in sight. Instead of expanding, Flink emptied dozens of department stores in previous months and advertised on real estate portals.