One of the things that bind our nation together is the mutual love for food. Several startups like Zomato and FoodPanda were smart enough to cash in on the opportunity much sooner than others. Last year, truly was the year of boom for food and hospitality startups. This year has so far looked promising for them too.
Restaurant Search on your Fingertips – Foodiebay to Zomato
It was July 2008 when an IIT Delhi graduate, Mr. Deepinder Goyal started a food ordering online portal foodiebay.com. Focusing only on Delhi-NCR region, the website became popular and rapidly expanded to Kolkata, Mumbai, Bengaluru and Pune by the end of 2010. It was around this time when the company received its primary round of funding from Infoedge. This was soon followed by three more rounds of funding from the same company for a total of 16.5 million USD as on March 2013.
Foodiebay.com turned into Zomato.com in November 2010. By 2011, the funding helped them expand further to cover food related establishments in cities of Chennai, Ahmedabad and Hyderabad. Having received rave reviews about the finesse of their website and mobile app, Zomato successfully overtook Burrp! which was the market leader in the similar space. The major reason being the ability to never digress from the original offering, which their competitor did more often.
Currently valued at more than Rs. 900 crores, Zomato has created huge value for those who funded them. They have created 600 jobs and are expanding all across the globe. Currently they are having a strong presence in 20 countries, the future plans are to scale up to as many countries as possible. The immediate next target is to penetrate the Holy Grail of businesses – North America where they will face stiff competition from Yelp!
Food Delivery World’s Giant ‘FoodPanda!’
Rohit Chadda, who worked in UK would constantly search for the best home delivery deals. From this very Chatur idea, FoodPanda, which has a presence in over 27 countries, was then brought to India by Rohit along with Amit Kohli in 2012. Having been strongly backed by the international counterpart, they went on to strongly market themselves in the country. Their approach was so aggressive that in 2012 itself, the website had partnered with over 2000 restaurants across 10 cities with more than 35000 visitors daily.
In 2014, the global giant raised USD 80 Million in funding to boost their global ambitions. With the aim of becoming one of India’s largest food delivery startups in the country, Food Panda acquired JustEat India earlier this year. UK based JustEat will acquire an undisclosed stake in the combined Indian entity, which will be India's largest food-ordering provider with a presence in more than 200 cities across 12,000 restaurants.
In terms of the future, FoodPanda aims at eating a major chunk of the USD 14 billion food services Indian pie. Globally, the same industry is valuated at USD 371 billion. With multiple acquisitions in the past too, FoodPanda is the market leader in South-East Asia. Currently, they are tied up with more than 30,000 restaurants in over 40 countries.
The Food and hospitality startup ecosystem continues to grow at a massive pace. With more and more entrants penetrating the market every month, India’s appetite for food startups continues to grow. Both Zomato and FoodPanda have quenched the thirst of certain sections, but if you have an idea which is different and innovative then you too should participate at the #BeAChatur contest and jump start your entrepreneurial journey.