Covid lockdown had hit restaurants significantly as revenues were squeezed due to near-zero demand even as supplies were impacted.
As restaurants prepare to return to normalcy in operations, food delivery company Swiggy has launched a slew of measures to support them. Part of a ‘Jumpstart Package’, Swiggy will provide safety kits needed for implementing hygiene protocols, and ‘business booster programs’ that “improve visibility and drive orders volumes at heavily subsidized rates,” the company said in a statement. More than 40,000 restaurants, Swiggy said, have already availed the package launched late last week. Swiggy will provide training content on the best practices to be undertaken at restaurant premises along with packaging material and safety kits at up to 40 per cent discounts.
To enable Covid-hit restaurants and support them, Swiggy is running a pilot service called StaplesPlus to provide over 250 raw materials, packaging material, fruits and vegetables, poultry and grocery, and dairy essentials apart from credit facility to restaurants, a source aware of the service had told Financial Express Online last month. Covid lockdown, which began March 25, 2020, had hit restaurants significantly as revenues were squeezed due to near-zero demand even as supplies were impacted.
“With a strong belief that enabling the success of our partners lies at the heart of the company’s success, we identified and solved on ground pain points to properly orient ourselves and our partners to the new normal,” said Paul Varghese, VP Supply, Swiggy.
Under the Jumpstart Package, restaurants would be able to upload videos and images of safety practices followed by them on their menu page on Swiggy app to regain consumer confidence. On the other hand, the ‘Business Booster’ pack will offer ‘efficient investment options’ to drive sales, Swiggy said. Restaurants will also have a bi-weekly payment option for smooth cash flows. They would also be able to get subsidized financing through the Swiggy Capital Assist program. However, these benefits under the package will be “maximized for restaurants with higher hygiene ratings” to encourage adherence to safety mechanisms.
As part of the Covid surviving strategy, Swiggy had laid off 1,100 employees last month to “achieve profitability with a smaller order volume than hitherto planned,” Co-founder & CEO Sriharsha Majety wrote in a note to employees. Swiggy’s arch-rival Zomato had also laid off around 500 employees to recover from the Covid impact.