Swiggy doubles down on cloud kitchens as India soon to become biggest market after China

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Updated: November 20, 2019 1:18:00 PM

Online food ordering and delivery platform Swiggy said it has set-up more than 1,000 cloud kitchens, for its nearly 1.6 lakh restaurants listed on the platform, with an investment of more than Rs 175 crore.

The growth comes amid Amazon’s reported plan to enter the food delivery market in India.

Online food ordering and delivery platform Swiggy said it has set-up more than 1,000 cloud kitchens, for its nearly 1.6 lakh restaurants listed on the platform, with an investment of more than Rs 175 crore. The expansion is made under its Swiggy Access — ready-to-occupy kitchens with a basic setup without charging rent or deposit from restaurants. Cloud kitchens are essentially a takeaway outlet working as a production unit for preparing food. The company claimed it has invested in more than a million square feet space in 14 cities in two-year period allowing small, medium, and large restaurants on its platform to expand their presence to more locations.

The growth comes amid Amazon’s reported plan to enter the food delivery market in India that currently has players including Zomato, Ola’s Foodpanda and Uber’s Uber Eats apart from Swiggy even as Zomato and Swiggy are again looking for a possible merger, according to a media report. However, Zomato had refuted such reports. “We have a tremendous focus on our business metrics and have seen great success in our goal towards profitability. We are not in talks with Swiggy for a merger or acquisition,” IANS reported citing a statement from a company spokesperson.

Also read: Flipkart enters league of corporate VCs backing startups; invests in loyalty programme platform

With more than 1,000 cloud kitchens, Swiggy has become the “largest enabler of this model for restaurants” potentially across the world, the company said in a statement. Swiggy will be investing further Rs 75 crore to increase the number of cloud kitchens in 12 new cities by March 2020, according to Vishal Bhatia, CEO, New Supply, Swiggy. “With the massive growth in online food ordering over the last 2-3 years, India has leapfrogged the widespread in-restaurant dining culture that was prevalent in many international markets,” said Bhatia adding that India will very soon have the second-highest number of cloud kitchens in the world, only next to China.

The cloud kitchen business across Swiggy’s partner restaurants and its own brands has created more than 8,000 direct and indirect jobs in the industry such as chef and kitchen staff and facilities and maintenance staff, Swiggy said. It is looking to add another 7,000 jobs in the coming six months. The company has restaurant partners in over 500 cities with 2.25 lakh delivery personnel.

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