Blue Apron eyes options, including a merger

Struggling meal-kit company is looking for ways to turn its business around

Blue Apron, the online seller of meal kits, said it may put itself up for sale.

The struggling company, which pioneered the meal-kit craze in the U.S., has faced tough competition from online rivals that also ship boxes of raw meat, fish and vegetables to doorstops. Grocers, including Kroger and Walmart, have also been selling their own ready-to-cook kits in stores.

READ: Walmart to sell 15-minute meal kits

Blue Apron said late Tuesday that its number of customers fell 37% to 351,000 in the last three months of 2019. Revenue fell 33% to US$94.3 million and it reported a loss of $21.9 million in the quarter.

READ: Food delivery is booming, but price is an issue for consumers

New York-based Blue Apron said it was also considering merging with another company or selling parts of its business.

Shares of Blue Apron Holdings Inc. fell 22% to $3.40 Wednesday morning. Its stock is down about 85% in the last year.

OPINION: Sizing up meal kits

To cut costs, Blue Apron said it would close a facility where its kits are packed and shipped in Arlington, Texas, cutting about 240 jobs. Its facilities in Linden, New Jersey, and Richmond, California, will remain open.

Blue Apron has seen its valuation dwindle since it became a public company. It was worth nearly $2 billion after its initial public offering in 2017. On Wednesday, the company was valued at about $58 million.

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