Restaurant listing platform Zomato, which forayed into the food ordering space a few months ago, fired almost 300 employees recently
A few days after grocery e-tailer Grofers shut down operations in nine cities, Gurgaon-based restaurant discovery and food ordering app Zomato has announced that it is winding up its online ordering business in four Indian cities.
The four cities are Lucknow, Kochi, Indore, and Coimbatore — the combined order volume of which accounted for less than 2 per cent of its total volumes.
In a statement, Zomato said that despite its marketing efforts, it didn’t see a significant increase in the order volumes in these cities.
“The size of the market is in these cities is small right now and is growing with time. We will re-launch when the time is right. In the meanwhile, we will continue to offer the best content (including scanned menus) to ensure that foodies are able to find and order great food,” said Pankaj Chaddah, Co-founder of Zomato, who is leading the online ordering business at the firm.
The InfoEdge-backed restaurant review and listing company had forayed into online food ordering in April 2015, which was later expanded into 14 cities across India. A few months ago, the firm laid off 10 per cent of its total workforce in India.
In October, Founder Deepinder Goyal had said in a blog post: “The next few months are going to be hard for all of us. But we’ll stick together, hustle, and not spend time over thinking things or being unnecessarily creative, so we can get to where we want to be.”
Founded in 2008, Zomato is known for its detailed restaurant information such as menus, contact details, pictures, geocoded maps and user reviews for 1.4 million restaurants. It has 75,000 restaurants listed on its platform in India, and consumers can use the online ordering feature to order from 12,000 of them.
In September, Zomato had raised US$60 million in funding, taking its total funding raised to date to approximately US$225 million.
The Indian foodtech industry has been reeling under pressure for the last few months, with companies including Zomato, foodpanda and TinyOwl resorting to mass layoffs, while new-age startups like SpoonJoy and Dazo shut shops towards the end of last year.
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