A new restaurant finder service has arrived in the capital. The Edinburgh Reporter met with Pramod Rao the CEO of Zomato UK earlier this week and he explained how the idea originated when several Bain & Co employees wanted to know what their local restaurants in Delhi had to offer. So someone came up with the idea of scanning the menus and putting them on a mini website for all their colleagues. And the rest as they say is history. The idea went viral and the company now employs 600 people worldwide.
Zomato has this week announced a fresh round of funding of $37m from Sequoia Capital and existing investors Info Edge. This takes Zomato’s total funding to over $53m; Zomato had earlier raised $16.5m from Info Edge over four rounds of funding.
The company has also expanded its services within UK from three cities to five, with the inclusion of Glasgow and Edinburgh. In addition to these, globally, Zomato has also announced the launch of its services in three new countries – Brazil (Sao Paulo), Turkey (Istanbul, Ankara), and Indonesia (Jakarta). In these three countries, Zomato will be available in local languages as well – Portuguese, Turkish, and Bahasa Indonesia respectively. Zomato has now extended its presence to 35 cities across 11 countries.
Zomato forayed into the UK with the launch of its operations in London in January 2013, followed by Manchester and Birmingham in over the next 6 months. Covering over 25,000 restaurants in the UK, Zomato provides key information such as menus, photographs, contact details, geocoded maps, and user ratings and reviews, making it the most exhaustive restaurant discovery platform in the country.
Zomato believes that menus, pictures, and maps are as important as reviews when it comes down to a customer’s decision- making process about where to eat. It follows a rich-content approach to restaurant search, and has a team that collects menu cards, clicks pictures and gets mapping information on its own. Reviews and ratings on Zomato are provided by users.
Zomato updates menu cards every three months across all restaurants, and provides updated scanned menu cards for over 160,000 restaurants across the 11 countries of its presence. Users can access all this information for free on Zomato’s website available at www.zomato.com or download Zomato’s beautifully designed location-aware mobile apps for iOS, Android or Windows.
Deepinder Goyal, Founder and CEO of Zomato said, “This is an exciting phase for us. We believe that we can disrupt restaurant search with our rich content-driven model. This financing will help us develop a product that will change the way people look for restaurant recommendations around them. We are excited to partner with Sequoia Capital as our venture partner to help us succeed internationally, and we can look forward to seeing Zomato in many more countries over the next couple of years.” Pramod Rao, CEO of Zomato UK said: “With a very diverse cuisine-driven restaurant industry, Scotland has gained significant prominence over the past decade. Edinburgh and Glasgow were the obvious choices to expand into in the UK. Scotland is one of our focus areas in the UK and we are planning to invest over half a million pounds in the coming year, and bring 6-8 people into the Zomato fold locally over the next quarter to strengthen our presence in the region.”
- ● Headquartered in New Delhi, India, Zomato is currently present in 35 cities across 11 countries: India, UK, UAE, Philippines, Qatar, Sri Lanka, New Zealand, South Africa, Brazil, Turkey and Indonesia.
- ● Zomato provides in-depth information such as scanned menus, mapped coordinates, contact details, pictures, and user ratings and reviews for over 160,000 restaurants worldwide.
● With a combined web and mobile traffic of over 15 million users per month, Zomato is ranked among the top 1900 websites in the world.
Zomato plans to continue to expand its reach into continental Europe, the Middle East, the Americas, and Asia over the next year.