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Instacart Inc. named technology industry veteran Fidji Simo as its new chief executive, as the grocery delivery company seeks to expand its business and go public.

Ms. Simo spent the past decade at Facebook Inc., leading the social media giant’s mobile and products teams and helping transition it from a private business to a public company. She joined Instacart’s board in January.

“I can’t think of a better leader to take the company public” and be at the helm, said Apoorva Mehta, co-founder and CEO of Instacart, who will become executive chairman of the board next month.

San Francisco-based Instacart has been among the biggest beneficiaries as Covid-19 concerns and restrictions reordered the U.S. business world. The company, which deploys shoppers to pick up groceries from supermarkets and deliver them to customers, got a boost as more consumers shifted their shopping online in the pandemic. Instacart also works with manufacturers to offer discounts on its platform and builds websites and mobile applications for retailers.

Ms. Simo joins Instacart as the company and other delivery providers face new challenges after a banner year of growth. More people are buying groceries online today than they did before the pandemic but companies are still struggling to turn a profit. Labor and transportation costs continue to eat into profit margins. Competition is intensifying, too, as rival food delivery companies pitch favorable deals.

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