Deepinder Goyal: Zomato Won't Let You Have A Bad Meal!

The food delivery segment in India has witnessed an unprecedented surge. Late night cravings, urgent home delivery, etc. are now becoming the norm. At present, 2-3 brands dominate this industry and Zomato is one of them.

Zomato is an Indian restaurant aggregator and delivers food in almost every Indian city. Zomato provides a complete reference for a restaurant. Right from menus to reviewers, it covers all the aspects centered around a restaurant. Zomato is Founded by Deepinder Goyal and Pankaj Chaddah. Zomato is gradually building on its global presence. Zomato has acquired about 12 startups in different countries. Zomato has done this in the United States through its acquisition of Seattle based Urbanspoon for an estimated $60 million in 2015.

Initially named Foodiebay when it began in 2008, the venture was renamed as Zomato in 2010.

Quick Facts

Name Deepinder Goyal
Born 1983 - Punjab, India
Age 37 (as of 2020)
Education Indian Institute Of Technology, Delhi
Occupation Co-Founder and CEO of Zomato
Wife Kanchan Joshi (Professor)
Net worth Rs. 1900 crore

Deepinder Goyal Education

Hailing from a middle-class family, Deepinder Goyal had the modest upbringing. After completing his graduation from the prestigious Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, his interest in food was an encouragement to conceive a venture that would help people have their lunch, breakfast, and dinner through the convenience of an app.

Deepinder Goyal's Zomato Idea

Zomato Logo
Zomato Logo

Ordering food from home wasn’t easy initially. To order food online, one had to choose from multiple restaurants without any information about the reviews and ratings. Discounts and offers on dining and food-delivery were next non-existent.

After graduating from IIT Delhi, Deepinder joined Bain and Company as a Senior Associate Consultant in January 2006. During his tenure with Bain, he founded FoodieBay.com that later became Zomato.com. The idea of FoodieBay.com was Deepinder’s eureka moment. At Bain and Company, everyone had to stand in long queues to place their order. Deepinder and his colleague at Bain, Pankaj, pondered a creative solution; they wanted to save time spent on ordering food.

It was then that the duo decided to create a website on food ordering for Bain employees using the company intranet. To their surprise, the website was a hit and received heavy traffic. Deepinder saw an opportunity that would revolutionize the food tech industry.

Zomato's Growth

Deepinder’s idea kickstarted a new era. Neither Deepinder nor his colleagues thought their ideation would give rise to one of the most popular food aggregation brands.

After their experiment and the response they got due to it, they were forced to add more restaurants to the list. By the end of the year, FoodieBay.com was introduced in the mega-cities like Kolkata and Mumbai. In the year 2010, their startup had started serving the customers in Pune and Bangalore.


Also Read: 21 Restaurant Marketing Strategy: Ideas and Trends


Deepinder’s Struggle

After establishing itself in big cities, Deepinder hired Gunjan Patidar, another IITian, to assist the team in Zomato Operations. Deepinder had a hectic time running FoodieBay.com. Since the concept behind FoodieBay.com was unique and unknown to people at that time, difficulties were inevitable. During the first two years, they ran the website without any hurdles, but found it difficult to scale as more and more restaurants and pubs were being covered under Zomato. It was a difficult time for Zomato due to dwindling financial resources and trouble in securing funding.

Zomato Funding

When the Zomato team was desperate for funding, Info Edge came into the picture. In August 2011, Info Edge invested $1 million in FoodieBay.com. This is when Deepinder and his team changed the name of the company to Zomato.com. The funding was a morale boost that prompted Deepinder and Pankaj to quit their jobs at Bain and Company and dedicate time towards the growth of Zomato.

After this, the trend of food delivery and ordering took India by storm, turning the tides for Zomato.


Also Read: Food Startups in India


The Rise Of Zomato

With rapid developments in the technology sector, Zomato modified its ways and launched its applications in iOS, Android, and Windows. Increasing popularity gave way to expansion in cities like Chennai, Hyderabad, and Ahemdabad.

After expansion, Zomato collaborated with Citibank which was named as “Citibank Zomato Restaurant Guide”.

Zomato's International Presence

Under Deepinder’s guidance, the company expanded to countries such as Dubai, UAE, SriLanka, Qatar, United Kingdom, South Africa, the Philippines, and New Zealand.

During FY 2011-2012, Zomato Media Pvt. Ltd. reported revenues worth INR 2.04 crores which ballooned to INR 11.38 crores during the financial year 2012-2013.

Zomato had around 2.5 million visitors on its website in March, 2012. This increased exponentially to 62.5 million during 2014. The revenues surged too, INR 30.06 crore generated in revenue increased to INR 96.7 crore in 2015.

Inspiration For The Masses

Deepinder has shown how to grow a business by setting up examples for his co-workers. Working for 24 hours is never a cakewalk, especially when there’s pressure from parents upon leaving a well-settled job. Under his guidance, Zomato has received multiple awards, mostly user’s choice. This shows how satisfied customers are. Rising from the lowest moments of despair and distress to revolutionizing an entire segment is no simple feat. That’s what Deepinder Goyal has achieved. A millennial cannot imagine life without Zomato—Deepinder has taken his venture to enviable heights!

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About Rishabh Rathi

2nd-year Computer Science Undergrad and a freelancer. Connect with me on LinkedIn - https://www.linkedin.com/in/rishabhrathi22/
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