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Spain fines delivery app Glovo €79 million for labour law breaches

Delivery company Glovo was fined €79 million by Spain’s labour ministry for violating a law that requires food delivery platforms to hire employees formally.

Labour authorities imposed the record fine for having recruited 10,614 workers as “false self-employed” (“falsos autónomos”) and not as formal or permanent employees, thus violating the Iberian country’s Social Security law.

On Wednesday, Spanish Labour Minister Yolanda Díaz (Unidas Podemos/GUE-NGL) accused Glovo of “violating” the labour rights of its workers and of “obstructing” investigations of the Labour Inspectorate, something she described as “extremely serious” in a social and democratic State, in which companies “have to comply with the law,” EURACTIV’s partner EFE reported.

Glovo was founded in Barcelona in 2015. It is an on-demand service that purchases and delivers products via its mobile app. Food delivery is its most popular service.

A controversial ‘Riders Law’ (ley rider) that has been in force since August 2021 obliges digital delivery platforms in Spain to hire their delivery drivers as regular employees, among other measures, RTVE reported.

Until the law was passed, most delivery platforms hired drivers on a freelance basis.

On Monday, the Spanish labour ministry began to notify several infringement procedures against the company in its Barcelona headquarters and Valencian branch.

Labour authorities have imposed a €63.2 million fine on Glovo’s office in the Catalan capital and €15.7 million on the company’s branch in Valencia.

During inspections carried out in Barcelona, the Labour Inspectorate determined that the labour relationship between the company and at least 8,331 workers was of regular and permanent nature, although they were self-employed for the company.

A fine of €39.06 million was imposed on the company for not having registered them in the Spanish Social Security scheme as regular full-time workers.

The Spanish Labour Ministry has also issued a settlement report for the company’s failure to pay Social Security contributions for all these workers, with a penalty amounting to €24.16 million.

In Valencia, Spanish Labour authorities confirmed the permanent working relationship with Glovo of 2,283 workers and issued an infraction report for €10.7 million and a settlement report for €5.05 million while imposing a sanction for “obstruction to the Labour inspection” amounting to €2,500.

So far this year, Glovo has already paid €42.2 million in Social Security contributions and another €84.4 million for infringements, in addition to sanctions of €14,000 for obstruction to the Labour Inspectorate.

(Fernando Heller |

Source: Eura Ctiv

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