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HOTELS & HOSPITALITY

NRAI raises concerns over deep discounts in meet with Zomato and Swiggy
Thursday, 10 January, 2019, 08 : 00 AM [IST]
Shraddha Joshi, Mumbai
Concerned over deep discounts offered by online food players, the National Restaurant Association of India (NRAI) held a consultative meet with leading e-commerce food players like Zomato, Swiggy, FoodPanda and UberEats in the national capital on Tuesday. This was the first task force meet between the association and food delivery companies.

Giving out details on the meet, Rahul Singh, president, National Restaurant Association of India, in a statement, observed, "Concerns of standalone and chain business operators regarding deep discounting, data masking, right to use own logistics, private labels and ad hoc campaigns were put forth."

He added, "Concerns have been well taken by all of them. We aim to continue these meetings on a bi-monthly basis for communicating feedback from the restaurant industry to the aggregators to ensure a healthy business environment for all stakeholders."

Reacting to the points raised, food ordering firm Zomato revealed that discounts and promotional schemes were just to encourage user participation. A company spokesperson asserted, "We, at Zomato, have been connecting consumers with restaurants for the past decade with the help of our various services. Discounts are merely a mechanism to encourage user participation as we advance our services.”

He added, “Our discounts and promotional schemes are carefully designed keeping in mind the best interest of all the parties in the ecosystem. We are actively working towards achieving a balance of user experience, restaurant growth and our operational efficiency."

The spokesperson clarified, "We have empowered our users to make informed food choices with the restaurant ratings and reviews platform and offer the widest of choices with over 75,000 restaurants listed on our food delivery platform. We have significantly expanded our online ordering and food delivery services over the last year and are currently present across 120 cities in India. We also have a significant breadth of loyal users who have trusted us with subscription programmes like Zomato Gold and Zomato Piggybank."

Meanwhile, the Swiggy spokesperson said its restaurant success was important. She added, “As a category creator and leader, Swiggy has always believed that enabling the success of our restaurant partners lies at the heart of our success. Since the start of our journey, we have invested heavily in the ecosystem’s growth, resulting in Swiggy’s growth as the largest food delivery platform in the country.”

“Owing to Swiggy’s industry-changing technology and service, we have been able to deliver a superior consumer experience and more business for our restaurant partners and do not rely on practices such as deep discounting, unsubstantiated commissions or unethical diversion of traffic to particular brands,” she said.

The spokesperson said, “Our fair practices have been widely acknowledged by the restaurant community, and as a result, in the last 12 months alone, not only have we doubled the number of restaurant partners on the platform to over 55,000, but more importantly, our partners have seen a two-fold increase in Swiggy’s contribution to their business. This includes thousands of small and medium restaurants on the platform.”

Swiggy is a strong proponent of the growth of our restaurant partners, investing significant capital and firepower towards creating Access Kitchens for their growth and expansion. Swiggy Access is building hundreds of pods to help thousands of small, medium and large restaurants expand to newer locations and cities and drive more business.

“As with our marketplace ethics and Swiggy Access, we are a strong believer and supporter of discussions, such as the one we had with NRAI, that work towards implementing fair practices and betterment of each and every stakeholder in the ecosystem,” the spokesperson added.
 
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