Zomato Launches Its Restaurant Review Service In London
Zomato, India’s leading restaurant review portal has launched its services in London (UK). The initial plan was to launch the service by Christmas of 2012, but with a two-week delay finally Zomato did it. An interesting point that blew our mind – we learnt that only on Nov 20, 2012 Zomato decided to launch its operation in London and they set themselves an ambitious deadline of Dec 25 for the launch, that’s just 35 days from the day of thought. Finally, just after 49 days of effort, Zomato is in London now.
How Zomato made this happen in record 49 days?
They had a team of six people that went to all 14,000 restaurants in London, manually scanned the menu cards, collected other data, figured out the geo location of the restaurant, quality checked the place and uploaded all collected data into Zomato. And, all this happened in the challenging cold weather of London. Now, the team is uploading content for 500 restaurants everyday and they say that still 3000 more restaurants are on the cards. That’s incredible work, Zomato.
Zomato says that they had to take 85 flights and about 1500 night outs to make this launch happen.
The four year old company is already present in India (13 cities), Srilanka (Colombo) and UAE (Dubai, Sharjah, Abu Dhabi). Zomato opened its operation in Srilanka and UAE last September.
The company has raised three rounds of funding so far, all from the same investor Info Edge (India) Ltd. The first round of funding of $1 Million was raised in August 2010; second round of $3 Million in September 2011; and third round of $2.3 Million in September 2012. With three rounds of investment, Info Edge Ltd has raised the stake upto 48.5% in Zomato, yes it is 48.5%.
Being a newbie in one of the biggest cities in the world, is Zomato a serious competitor to the leading restaurant review websites in the UK? We have to wait for couple of more quarters to see the result.
Right now, Zomato’s London section is on invite-only mode. We thank Zomato for the early bird invite. Few screenshots below.