Startup Stories

09 Aug'18

startup

Zomato Success Story


To begin the journey on the road to success, an entrepreneur requires an idea, one which will set them apart. An idea can strike anyone but what comes after this idea is what makes or breaks the business. Passion is the first and foremost essential. It is followed by grit and a strong work ethic. Open-mindedness and the ability to bounce back from failure are other important qualities. Patience is key. An entrepreneur cannot expect results to show in the blink of an eye.



Food is a driving force for many. It definitely does come under one of the most basic amenities for a human being. But waiting for food is something everyone hates especially when they are hungry. When it comes to a country as busy as India in its peak lunch hours, getting a glance at the menu card before ordering food is also a really big problem. Deepinder Goyal and Pankaj Chaddah, both graduates of IIT- Delhi used to work at Bay and Co. and they came up with the perfect solution to this problem of waiting in long queue lines for food, Zomato. It wouldn’t be wrong if we called Zomato the Google for food.

Their idea germinated in the form of Foodiebay where they put up scanned copies of the food court menu onto their company’s private network. Everyone at the company soon started using this service and there was a sudden surge in the website traffic. By now this wasn’t just confined to the walls of their office. Everyone else around their vicinity also started using these scanned copies. The first professional restaurant menu that Deepinder and Pankaj uploaded onto their site was that of Hauz Khas in Delhi. After this, they started putting expanding this idea into other metropolitan cities of the country. Kolkata, Mumbai and Bangalore being a part of this. And once word around, thousands of people started using their website to get to know about the best restaurants around. It was this interest from people around that encourage both Pankaj and Deepinder to think of going PAN India with this idea. This is when the idea of renaming the site came into their minds. They wanted something with more of a punch and something which was easier to remember and hence came the word ZOMATO in November,2010.

The founders then wanted to make life a little easier for their users and hence came the idea of building a mobile application. With this growth in their business and their ideas arose a need of funding. This idea of Deepinder’s and Pankaj’s impressed Sanjeev Bikhchandani, the founder of Naukri.com. In December of 2010, Sanjeev Bikhchandani provided Zomato with a funding of 1 million USD through his company Info Edge India and from here on, there was no looking back. The next round of funding that they got was again from Info Edge India and this time it was 3.5 million USD and again in the year 2013, Zomato received a staggering 10 million USD from Info Edge India which made Info Edge India a holder of nearly 50% of the shares in the start-up. Other investors for Zomato include Sequoia Capital, VY Capital and Temasek. The funds just kept coming in after this. By the end of 2018, it is estimated that Zomato would’ve received a funding of more than 300 million USD. This funding then gave Zomato the idea of expanding into more cities across India apart from Delhi, Bangalore, Kolkata and Mumbai. So, they moved into Hyderabad, Ahmedabad, Pune, Chennai etc. In September 2012, Zomato launched its services in Dubai, Sri Lanka, United Kingdom, South Africa, Turkey and New Zealand.

Currently, there are over 100 million Zomato users worldwide and people use the application to get in touch with other foodies around the globe so that they can get the best of food in whatever place possible. This being an added advantage, big restaurants from around the globe post their advertisements on the Zomato app and this is basically how Zomato makes its money. Another form of income for them is the sale of tickets for food festivals that they partner with or sponsor. Not to forget the hardships that Deepinder Goyal and Pankaj have had to face in their quest to the top of the mountain. Since the whole plan from the start of this business was to be able to reach out to each and every street in every city to provide the best services to its users, there have been multiple ups and downs. Zomato’s services in the cities of Kochi, Coimbatore, Lucknow and Indore are currently suspended because their markets weren’t ready for this level of business

These small downfalls have however never disheartened either Deepinder or Pankaj. Within 8 years of Zomato’s envision the company has proudly marked its presence in 36 countries and by the end of 2018 it is estimated that they will reach atleast 50 countries around the globe. Zomato proudly boasts over 1.5 million restaurants on its database and they don’t seem like they want to stop at this and one day hope to be at power with global players present across the world. Zomato is also india’s first ever global application.

Both Deepinder and Pankaj are leaving no stone unturned and this is the main reason as to why Zomato continues to climb up the ladder of success.