British meal delivery company Deliveroo reported a return to order growth in its first quarter, with a 2% increase year-on-year driven by its operations in France, UAE and Hong Kong and continued strength in Italy.

Orders in Britain and Ireland, which account for more than half its total, were flat, it said on Thursday.

The gross transaction value of its orders increased 6% to 1.83 billion pounds ($2.28 billion), it said, while revenue grew 2% to 514 million pounds, an acceleration on 1% growth in the previous quarter. Guidance for the full 2024 year was maintained.

Chief Executive Will Shu said: "I am pleased with the start we have made to this year, building on the strong progress in 2023."

Shares in Deliveroo, which competes with Just Eat Takeaway and Uber Eats, rose 3% in early deals. ($1 = 0.8021 pounds) (Reporting by Paul Sandle; editing by James Davey)