Food delivery service Waitr Holdings (WTRH -8.79%) is expanding its business strategy, and the market likes it. Shares jumped as much as 21% Friday morning, and remained up 6.2% as of 10:45 a.m. EST.
After the bell Thursday, Waitr announced it will be partnering with payment processing company Flow Payments to create a cannabis delivery and payment processing service for legal marijuana dispensaries. The partnership will create a platform combining Waitr's delivery technology and resources with Flow Payments' processing to facilitate the sale and delivery of cannabis where state and federal laws allow.
Waitr was founded in 2013 and has focused on underserved delivery markets, tying consumers' food demand with local restaurants. Of the move into cannabis, Waitr CEO Carl Grimstad said in a statement, "As the regulatory framework around the cannabis industry within the United States continues to evolve, we see this as a natural step in our own evolution and ability to continue bringing value to our shareholders."
The company had already begun to diversify beyond its delivery and take-out ordering services. Last year it introduced a "dine-in" tableside service technology, offering what it calls "an integrated payment solution that can help restaurants improve their safety protocols, sales and efficiency."
Investors wanting to hear more about the move into cannabis should look forward to Waitr's fourth-quarter and full-year 2020 results being reported on March 8.