The Food tech Unicorn- Zomato, Turns 12

By Foodism Team


Zomato turned 12, and we are psyched! If you are a foodie, you have ordered from Zomato on those lazy nights. With friends, loved ones, fam, partners, before Netflix, it was Zomato and chill. So we thought let’s do a little digging in our Food buddy and here is what we came across - The creatives and the non-creatives

We Indians live a conventional life. We are bound by our conventional rules, from school, high school, college to our careers, we often make our choice based on what our society thinks of as appropriate and ‘the right way’. Typically, these people are known as non-creatives. Living their conventional life, with their conventional jobs. 

Then there are the creatives. Like our fellow IIT-ian and co-founder of Zomato - Deepinder Goyal. 

After years of ordering from the phone, and being put on hold for just placing an order, Deepinder decided to open his own delivery startup. Unfortunately, it was too early for this development in India, so Goyal joined Bain and Company where he observed the analytics behind his Idea. From there, it was only uphill for Deepinder!

As we said, the creatives have a way to work around things. Their ways may not be conventional, but if they didn’t think out of the box, we wouldn't have discovered social media. Deepinder was persistent in his goal of Online food ordering a reality. This is the most important trait of a creative person- Persistence.

Initially named Foodie Bay, Zomato was founded in 2008 by Deepinder Goyal and Pankaj Chaddah. In 2010, he raised angel investment and rebranded as Zomato. 2012 was big, they went international with the UAE launch. In 2015, they launched food delivery and in 2017, a premium membership program as Zomato Gold! Let’s track further -

2018- Zomato launches hyperpure - a b2b supplies business for restaurants and 

starts Food@work. In 2019, hops on the video trend and launched videos on their platform. In the same year, December, they launched Zomaland and a month after acquired Uber Eats!

Which brings us to now- Their 12th Birthday!

While no one enjoys talking about numbers, let’s take a quick painful look anyway-

The total funding of zomato was above 850 million dollars with a valuation of 3 billion dollars. Monthly, 70 million users from 24 different countries use Zomato for various purposes. Zomato also has 1.5 million restaurants, but the 12th birthday comes at a difficult time. Like for every other business, Pandemic has been hard on zomato. Zomato has doubled its revenue from $192 million in FY19 to $394 million in FY20. The company saw its EBITDA loss has widened by 5.7% from $277 million in FY19 to $293 million in FY20.

On the above, this is what Goyal had to say - “While COVID-19 has impacted the size of our business, it has accelerated our journey to profitability. In terms of the size of the business, COVID-19 has set us back by a year or so – but a year is only a small blip when you are building a company for the next 100 years,”

But Zomato is not just any company- It is a food tech Unicorn of India. Zomato has helped the economy along its journey of success. Emerging a star out of the bloodbath of 2014, winning over foodpanda, acquiring uber-eats, getting its first competition- swiggy, Zomato has been through rocky ups and downs. Zomato also became the first unicorn to provide menstrual leaves! From employing men and women as delivery agents, zomato has come a long way from being a failed idea. 

As per investors, Zomato is currently targeting Indian investors. While made in India emerged later, Zomato is after all- Made in India by an Indian! From an eating joint that sought to solve a 'hunger' problem to becoming a huge Indian multinational restaurant aggregator and food delivery company - Zomato's growth story is not only a perfect example of Atmanirbhar Bharat but also its young startups. And not to forget that Zomato broke the norms of how traditional India consumed their food. It challenged the conventional way of eating outside and changed the trend of food consumption. From small businesses to large chains such as dominos, Zomato helped restaurants deliver happiness and food in the pandemic- essential supplies.

Now Zomato is crucially riding to build an appetite among Indian investors. Zomato recently changed to a public limited company from a private company ahead of its planned initial public offering (IPO) later this year. On April 5, 2021, the famous food tech company passed a special resolution reorganising itself as Zomato Limited, starting April 9, 2021.

Zomato which holds the tagline 'Never have a bad meal', has its worthy competitor - Swiggy. As Goyal says- the Pandemic has been a difficult time financially, but in terms of opportunity, there was nothing to see but positive growth. With zomato delivering essentials, medicines, grocery in the pandemic, it did not just win people’s wallets but hearts. 

So as we were talking about- Non-creatives are essential, no doubt. They are what makes the wheel go round and round. But it is the creatives who bring the wow-factor to the table. The ideas that have changed the world as we know it. Social media has changed how media works, amazon has changed shopping trends, and zomato has changed the face of ordering food forever! This reminds us, Time to order from our favourite restaurant- BRB!