The online food delivery saga in Vietnam has taken an interesting turn.
Days after announcing the shutdown of its Vietnamese business, Rocket Internet’s Foodpanda announced today that it sold it to rival Vietnammm for an undisclosed amount.
Foodpanda.vn’s customers and its base of over 1,000 restaurant partners will now be forwarded to and combined with those of Vietnammm.
“This deal enables Foodpanda’s customers and listed restaurants to keep making and receiving orders online in Vietnam,” the company said in a statement sent to Tech in Asia.
The deal also marks a consolidation in Vietnam’s online food delivery space, which now becomes a battle between homegrown brands Vietnammm and Eat.vn.
Vietnammm is a subsidiary of one of the world’s largest online food delivery websites Takeaway, and Eat.vn is backed by VC Corp, one of the most prominent Vietnamese online media companies.
Ralf Wenzel, co-founder and CEO of Foodpanda group, said:
Foodpanda has always been in the front line of market consolidation in the online food delivery sector by establishing clear number one positions in the vast majority of its countries and by conducting a number of complementary acquisitions in the past. This time we contribute our business in Vietnam which allows us to focus instead on more attractive core markets and helps Vietnammm to become the strongest local player.
Vietnammm CEO Jochem Lisser, for his part, said: “Vietnammm.com is thrilled to announce the deal with Foodpanda to solidify its market leader position in Vietnam. We welcome all new customers and restaurants and will do everything we can to ensure a smooth transition to Vietnammm.com.”
A small market
Last week, Foodpanda global head for communications Tim Schefenacker confirmed to Tech in Asia that they closed down the business in Vietnam because “we saw a smaller and rather long-term opportunity.”
A December 2 notice of termination Foodpanda sent its partner restaurants stated that the company was suffering from a “financial situation” and “facing many difficulties” in the country. It further said that five days following the announcement – on December 7 – the company would have ceased all business activities in the country, primarily its website Foodpanda.vn.
Foodpanda launched in Vietnam under the HungryPanda banner in 2012, a time when competition in this sector was already heating up around Asia. In Vietnam, the company took a beating from the strong homegrown brands, forcing it to amp up marketing and advertising spend. Local news site Genk reported that up to the end of 2014, Foodpanda was aggressively fighting for its share of the market and was even advertising on TV.
Around the globe, Foodpanda and sister site Hellofood are competing head-on with a variety of meal delivery sites and apps. Foodpanda has gobbled up competitors in Mexico, Russia, Brazil, Eastern Europe, India, and Southeast Asia, bringing its restaurant partners to more than 38,000 in 500 cities worldwide at the latest count.
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