Zomato’s Deepinder Goyal joins Urban Company’s board
Deepinder Goyal, CEO of restaurant aggregator Zomato, has joined the board of directors of Urban Company as an independent director.
Former Mckinsey partner Ireena Vittal, Helion co-founder Ashish Gupta, and Shyamal Mukherjee, former chairwoman and senior partner of PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) India, have all joined the Urban Company board as independent directors.
“As we enter our next chapter of expansion, we are honoured to have prominent industry professionals join our board as independent directors.” They bring a wealth of experience and industry knowledge to the table, which will help us on our way to developing a company. In a statement, Abhiraj Singh Bhal, co-founder and CEO of Urban Company, said, “We look forward to their mentorship in the years to come.”
In a June interview, Bhal stated that Urban Company intends to go public by the end of 2022 or the beginning of 2023.
Abhiraj Bhal, Raghav Chandra, and Khaitan founded Urban Company in 2014 to provide home and cosmetic products in India, Dubai, Australia, Singapore, and Saudi Arabia. About half a billion dollars has been invested in the company by Tiger Global, Vy Capital, Steadview Capital, and other investors.
Three executive directors, three non-executive directors, and four independent directors will now serve on the board of Urban Company.
Vittal, an IIM Calcutta graduate who spent 16 years as a partner at Mckinsey & Co, is a board member of many firms, including Compass Plc, Diageo Plc, Godrej Consumer Products Limited, HDFC Limited, and Wipro Ltd.
Gupta is a co-founder of venture capital firm Helion and serves on the boards of InfoEdge, Hindustan Unilever, Pubmatic, Simplilearn, and Gupshup, are the others. He was a co-founder of Tavant Technologies and Junglee and a consultant for Oracle, IBM Research, and Woodside Fund. Daksh, Infoedge, MakeMyTrip, MuSigma, Upwork, Redbus, and Flipkart are the companies he has invested in.
Goyal, who founded Zomato, serves on the boards of Unacademy and Magicpin. He launched the food delivery company in 2008 and took it public the following year.
Deepinder Goyal and Pankaj Chaddah launched Zomato, an Indian international restaurant aggregator and food delivery website, in 2008. Zomato offers restaurant information, menus, user ratings, and food delivery from partner restaurants in a few locations. As of 2019, the service is provided in 24 countries and over 10,000 cities.
The company originated as Foodiebay in 2008. On January 18, 2010, it changed its name to Zomato Media Pvt. Ltd. Delhi NCR, Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai, Pune, and Ahmedabad were added to the list in 2011, and it expanded its international presence by opening offices in the United Arab Emirates, Sri Lanka, Qatar, the United Kingdom, the Philippines, and South Africa in 2012. In 2013, it expanded into New Zealand, Turkey, Brazil, and Indonesia, with websites and apps in Turkish, Portuguese, Indonesian, and English. It debuted in Portugal in April 2014, followed by launches in Canada, Lebanon, and Ireland in 2015.
The company acquired Seattle-based food site Urbanspoon in 2015, allowing it to expand into the United States and Australia. Zomato’s growth in the United States competed directly with similar services like Yelp and Foursquare.
In 2011, Zomato developed a website dedicated to food pornography. In May 2012, it collaborated with Citibank to publish a printed edition of the website’s “Citibank Zomato Restaurant Guide.” It was but eventually phased out.
In February 2017, Zomato Infrastructure Services was launched, allowing restaurants to increase their reach without incurring fixed costs. In September 2017, Zomato declared that it has “become profitable” in all of its 24 countries of operation and a “zero-commission model” for partner restaurants. Zomato stopped accepting updates from its active users at the end of 2017 since it does not utilise moderators to monitor and make updates. Users have been having issues with the app’s new payment functionality.
Zomato lowered its losses by 34% to 389 crore in 2016–17, down from 590.1 crore the last year. Zomato was named a unicorn in February of this year. In September 2019, the company lay off over 10% of its back-end staff, including those responsible for customer service, merchant assistance, and delivery partner support. In April 2020, the company launched Zomato Market, an online grocery delivery service, in 80+ cities throughout India in response to increased demand for online groceries as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak.
Zomato introduced contactless dining in April 2020 to prepare for a post-lockdown world, which eliminates the use of high-touch components like the menu, ordering, and bill payments using bar codes or the app while the staff wears masks.
In May 2020, Zomato let off another 520 employees due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Even though demand for food delivery services from restaurants and takeout has grown, Zomato’s claimed reason for needing cuts is that the coronavirus outbreak would be followed by an economic recession, which will hurt orders.
In August 2020, Zomato was recognised for introducing a period leave policy that allows female employees to take up to ten days off each year if they cannot work due to the health effects of their menstrual cycle. Employees who are transgender are covered by the policy. On July 23, 2021, Zomato went public with an IPO price of Rs 72-76 per share.
Between 2010 and 2013, Zomato received around $16.7 million from Info Edge India, giving Info Edge India a 57.9% stake in the company. Sequoia Capital and Info Edge India contributed an additional US$37 million in November 2013.
In November 2014, Zomato raised $60 million in a fresh round of funding, valuing the company at $660 million post-money. Info Edge India and Vy Capital led this round of funding, with Sequoia Capital joining as a participant.
A new $50 million fundraising round was headed by Info Edge India, Vy Capital, and Sequoia Capital in April 2015. Temasek, a Singapore government-owned investment entity, teamed up with Vy Capital in September to raise an additional $60 million.
In October 2018, Zomato received $210 million in funding from Ant Financial, Alibaba’s payment subsidiary, in exchange for a 10% stake in the company. Zomato was valued at around $2 billion in the sale. Zomato secured an extra $150 million from Ant Financial earlier this year.
Zomato raised $62 million from Temasek in September 2020 after previously committed money from Ant Financial failed to materialise.
In October 2020, Zomato raised $52 million in a Series J funding round from Kora, a US-based investment firm.
In February 2021, Zomato raised $250 million from five investors, including Tiger Global Management, for a total valuation of US$5.4 billion.
About Deepinder Goyal
In India, the meal delivery market has grown at a phenomenal rate. Late-night cravings, last-minute home deliveries, and so forth have all become commonplace. Even though India has a big potential market, only a few firms dominate the industry, and Zomato is one of them.
Zomato is an Indian restaurant aggregator that delivers food to almost all of the country’s cities. Zomato is a search engine for restaurants. Everything about a restaurant is covered, from menus to customer reviews. Who developed this fantastic company to fulfil all of your midnight desires? To be accurate, Deepinder Goyal and Pankaj Chaddah. Zomato’s global footprint is rapidly growing. To increase its footprint in other areas, they have purchased around 12 startups in several countries, including offshore competitors. In 2014, Zomato acquired Gastronauci, a Polish restaurant finder, and Cibando, an Italian restaurant finder. In 2015, they completed their most acquisition, paying $60 million for Seattle-based Urbanspoon.
When it was launched in 2008, it was called Foodiebay, but in 2010 it was renamed Zomato.
The year 2021 begins on January 1. On New Year’s Eve, Deepinder Goyal triumphantly stated that Zomato had achieved its greatest ever ordering velocity on December 31, 2020, receiving a record of 4,100 orders per minute.
January 1 2021 – Zomato, like other Indian companies, is apparently eyeing the public markets in 2021, according to Deepinder Goyal.
December 2020 – When Deepinder learned that his food delivery company was ranked worst in the Fairwork India Ratings for 2020, he resolved to improve working conditions for his staff.
Deepinder Goyal – Education
Deepinder Goyal grew up in a middle-class family with a modest childhood. After graduating from Delhi’s famous Indian Institute of Technology, his passion for food inspired him to create a business that would allow people to order their lunch, breakfast, and dinner through the ease of an app.
Deepinder Goyal – The idea of Zomato
It wasn’t simple at first to order meals from home. To purchase food online, one had to choose from restaurants without knowing anything about their ratings or reviews. There were few discounts and special offers on dining and food delivery.
After graduating from IIT Delhi, Deepinder joined Bain and Company as a Senior Associate Consultant in January 2006. While at Bain, he founded FoodieBay, which later became Zomato. When he came up with the idea for FoodieBay.com, he had an epiphany. To place an order at Bain and Company, everyone had to wait in long lines.
Deepinder and a Bain colleague, Pankaj, discovered a creative method for reducing the amount of time they spent collecting food.
The two then decided to create a website allowing Bain employees to buy food using the business intranet. To their astonishment, the website was a hit and received a lot of visitors. Deepinder recognised an opportunity that may revolutionise the food technology industry.
Deepinder Goyal – Zomato’s Growth
Deepinder’s concept signalled the start of a new era. He and his colleagues had no clue that their concept would grow into one of the most well-known food aggregation brands.
After their experiment and the response, they were forced to add more establishments to the list. FoodieBay.com was launched at the end of the year in megacities like Kolkata and Mumbai. In 2010, they started serving consumers in Pune and Bangalore.
Deepinder Goyal – Struggle
Deepinder’s first stumbling block came from his family, who were hesitant to see him leave his secure employment at the firm and go on the startup path. Deepinder’s wife, Kanchan Joshi, whom he met at IIT, initially hesitated but ultimately became entirely supportive of his new lifestyle.
Deepinder hired Gunjan Patidar, another IITian, to aid the team in Operations when the firm was established in major cities. He had a busy time running FoodieBay.com because the concept was novel and unknown at the time. Thus challenges were unavoidable. They successfully maintained the website for the first two years but found it difficult to scale as the number of restaurants and bars covered by Zomato grew. Due to declining financial resources and difficulties in acquiring finance.
Deepinder Goyal – Raising funds for Zomato
When the Zomato team was in severe need of funds, Info Edge stepped in to help. FoodieBay.com received a $1 million investment from Info Edge in August 2011.
Deepinder and his crew changed the company’s name to Zomato at this point. Deepinder and Pankaj were able to resign their employment at Bain and Company and devote all of their time to the expansion of Zomato as a result of the funding.
Following this, the food delivery and ordering trend swept India, turning the tide for Zomato. Since their first fundraising in 2011, they’ve received further funding from several investors, and in 2018, they were designated as a unicorn. They closed a $660 million main funding round in 2020, valued at $3.9 billion post-money.
Zomato changed its techniques in response to rapid technological advancements and created iOS, Android, and Windows apps. As the company’s popularity grew, it expanded to other cities like Chennai, Hyderabad, and Ahmedabad.
Following its expansion, Zomato partnered with Citibank to create the “Citibank Zomato Restaurant Guide.”
Deepinder Goyal – The Dream Flight
The company expanded its activities in nations like Dubai, UAE, Sri Lanka, Qatar, the United Kingdom, South Africa, the Philippines, and New Zealand under Deepinder’s leadership.
Zomato Media Pvt. Ltd. generated revenues of INR 2.04 crores in 2011-2012, which increased to INR 11.38 crores in 2012-2013.
In March of 2012, Zomato’s website got around 2.5 million visitors. During 2014, this number grew at an exponential rate, reaching 62.5 million. Their sales climbed dramatically, from INR 30.06 crore in 2012 to INR 96.7 crore in 2015.
Deepinder Goyal – An Inspirational Success Story
Deepinder has set a good example for his coworkers by showing them how to start a business. Working for 24 hours is difficult, especially when your parents are pressuring you to leave a secure employment. Under his leadership, Zomato has received multiple awards, the majority of which were user-voted, proving customer satisfaction. It takes a lot of guts to rise from the abyss of despair and misery to transform a whole business.
This has been completed by Deepinder Goyal. A millennial can’t fathom life without Zomato, and Deepinder has built an outstanding business.
About Urban Company
Urban Company, formerly known as UrbanClap, is one of India’s most successful companies, with a rapidly growing customer base.
It is the leading online services provider with fundamental background, and it has made it possible to access services like massage and salons without travelling outside.
It is a one-stop-shop that allows customers to hire professionals like beauticians, masseurs, sofa cleaners, carpenters, and technologists with a single click.
Every business has a unique story to tell, and we’re going to show you how Urban Company came to be, how the idea arose, and how it has grown so quickly.
About the Company
The largest home service platform in Asia is Urban Company. Customers can use the platform to book professional home services like cleaning, painting, plumbing, carpentry, appliance repair, and other services for both women and men.
This Indian firm has offices in Singapore, the United Arab Emirates, and Australia.
It’s offered in 30 Indian cities (including Agra, Ahmedabad, Bhopal, Bangalore, Bhubaneswar, Delhi NCR, Indore, Jaipur, Kolkata, Mumbai, Lucknow, Vadodara, and others) and four international markets (including Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sydney, and Singapore).
It was first released in November of 2014. The company’s primary aim is to enable millions of professionals around the world to provide services at home as they’ve never seen before. Three young minds, Abhiraj Singh Bhal, Raghav Chandra, and Varun Khaitan, came up with this brilliant idea. This was their second time trying to create a company.
The company has grown tremendously since its inception, and it offers services in two verticals: Beauty & Wellness and Home Repairs & Maintenance. There are over 40,000 service professionals on its platform, 35000 of whom are from India.
Urban Company Founders
Abhiraj Singh Bhal, Raghav Chandra, and Varun Khaitan came up with this brilliant idea.
Abhiraj and Varun’s initial company was Cinemabox, an on-demand movie streaming platform providing long-distance bus entertainment. Raghav Chandra attempted to launch an auto ride-sharing app named Buggy on his own.
“In contemporary society, these persons [service providers] constitute the most atomic form of business units… If India is to flourish and gain from it, customers must be empowered.” – As Raghav Chandra, co-founder of Urban Company, put it.
Despite having a novel idea, they quickly understood that their hard work would not go unnoticed.
The three finally came together to form “Urban Company” as part of their new goal.
Abhiraj Bhal is primarily responsible for marketing and business development at Urban Company. Varun Khaitan is in charge of operations and partner success, while Raghav Chandra is in charge of technology and product development.
Origin of Urban Company
Customers had trouble finding the services they required even in 2014. The three believed there was a disconnect between how individuals found services and how they spoke with service providers.
As a result of their interactions and knowledge of the issues, the founders came up with the idea of creating an all-in-one platform.
UrbanClap was founded to recognise this need and essentially translate the Yellow Pages design into an online platform.
It started off as a lead-generation stage, but Urban Company evolved into a full-stack model that onboard gig workers and provided them with financial aid, skills training, branded tools and products, and a ready-to-serve market. The full-stack architecture allowed the organisation to maintain quality standards regardless of which partner provided the service, increasing customer affection and loyalty.
The three founders raised an amount of money from many initiatives quickly, and by 2015, the firm had raised more than a million dollars.
Why did UrbanClap Change its Name to Urban Company?
In January 2020, Urban Company became UrbanClap.
In light of this significant shift, co-founder Abhiraj Bhal believes it is critical to creating a globally acceptable brand.
“From the districts of Darling Harbour in Sydney to the condominiums of Gurgaon, Urban Company is a straightforward brand with international appeal,” he said in a statement. Our dedication to providing dependable and reasonable home services hasn’t changed. This is made possible by collaborating directly with our service partners and assisting them with upskilling, finance, insurance, product procurement, and other aspects of becoming micro-service entrepreneurs.”
The primary goal of rebranding is to expand the umbrella brand’s sub-brands. The founders also intend to spread their services to other Indian cities.
Following the lockdown, an urban company sees a strong recovery.
Following the lockdown, Urban Company saw a significant increase in business, and it is projected that sales will quadruple in the current fiscal year compared to the previous year.
The organisation has been working hard to increase its partner strength to satisfy the increased demand.
“During the shutdown, we focused on re-imagining offering safer and more hygienic services (during the COVID-19 pandemic) and have made substantial investments in technology, PPE (personal protective equipment), and safety training,” said Varun Khaitan, co-founder of the company. Since June, customers have trusted Urban Company to enter their homes for both their beauty and home service requirements, and the business has been on a really favourable trajectory.”
“We are witnessing strong growth in business despite the months of lockdown,” he continued. We’ve already surpassed our pre-COVID peak by more than 30%, and we expect to increase two-fold in FY21 compared to FY20.”
Urban Company has acquired the trust of its consumers over the last six years, and because of the COVID-19 outbreak, everyone is now more concerned about hygiene.
As a result, consumers are increasingly opting for salon services at home. As a result, they have increased their trust in Urban Company due to their competent and hygienic services.
Investors and Funding
The company has received funding from 12 investors to date, with Vy Capital and Tiger Global Management being the most recent additions to the list.
It has raised a total of $190.9 million in fundraising over ten rounds, with the most recent round taking place on August 25, 2020.
They’ve bought three companies so far, the most recent of which was Glamazon on March 4, 2020.
The Full-stack Model of Urban Company
The traditional business model is wholly converted into a full-stack fulfilment model. The full-stack approach entails a significant investment in Urban Company’s partners in terms of training, micro-financing, and addressing branded products and tools, among other things.
This strategy allows clients to obtain convenient services at any time, enhancing their experience and increasing upgrade retention rates.
To pivot full-stack, the UC team created a partner app and identified numerous possibilities for UC partners, including a financial product, a partner supply chain for consumables, training centres based on apps and video conferencing capabilities, SOP flows, and more.
“An unusual but big business solution was closing down our lead-gen strategy and pivoting to full-stack, which was a challenging but rewarding move,” says Kirat C, Product SVP, Urban Company. The two business models shared nearly half of the revenue. However, the NPS (Net Promoter Score) and retention data favoured the standardised booking strategy. We pivot to full-stack after realising that customers needed the whole package, including confirmed fulfilment, price transparency, authentic products, service SOPs, etc.”
edited and proofread by nikita sharma