Online food delivery platform, Foodpanda, today announced the appointment of former Ojas Ventures VC – Gautam Balijepalli. Gautam Balijepalli has been appointed as the Head of Strategy. This comes after the company reported to invest Rs 400 crores to strengthen its network.
Gautam has been a Venture Capital investor at Ojas Ventures where he invested in several companies, where he helped them to scale. Being an IIT and LBS (London business School) alumnus, he has co-founded CartPerk technologies. Further, he has been an investor and mentor to WarnOven, a food-tech startup.
Commenting on the appointment, Pranay Jivrajka, CEO of Foodpanda said, “With Gautam coming on board, we intend to bring pertinent changes in our strategic direction and create the right intervention points for the industry to innovate and grow. His professional experience and industry knowledge will be great sources of insights for the goals we have set out to achieve for restaurant partners, delivery riders and consumers.”
The company plans to expand its partnerships with the restaurants. Gautam stated, with 1.3 billion people and only 2 percent of total food order placed online, India is a market to be in right now.
He further added, “With that context, leveraging best practices will be our top priority to create value for all stakeholders, including consumers and restaurant partners. It is an exciting time for Foodpanda India and I look forward to working with Pranay and the team to drive significant value in this growing industry.”
According to a recent report, the food-tech market in India is expected to grow at a CAGR of 12 percent between 2016-2021. The growth in the market is backed by amount of increasing disposable income, growing average household income and the rising trend of two-income-no-kids. Supported by growing internet penetration from 10 percent in 2011 to 27 percent in 2015, coupled with growing ecommerce market and young working population, the food tech market in the country is expected to grow at a robust pace during in the time frame.