Free Press Journal

Zomato on acquisition spree again; buys out US firm NexTable


Mumbai: Gurgaon-based restaurant discovery platform Zomato today acquired the US-based online table reservation platform NexTable for an undisclosed amount. The platform will soon be renamed to Zomato Book, according to a company statement. The news comes on the heels of Zomato making a foray into the online ordering segment for which they started operations in Delhi-NCR through its mobile app today.

NexTable enables customers to make restaurant reservations online in real time and includes table management and marketing tools for restaurants. With NexTable and MaplePOS in its pocket, Zomato will now further its reach into restaurants, the statement said. These acquisitions will enable the firm to offer point of sale solutions, table management and reservation system services to restaurant businesses.

Zomato co-founder and COO Pankaj Chaddah said, “We want to own the communication layer between restaurants and customers. NexTable will add to this layer by bringing in the convenience of easy, online reservations for thousands of restaurants to our millions of users.”

NextTable is the ninth acquisition for Zomato in the past year. Urbanspoon was its largest acquisition for USD 52 million in January and marked its entry into the US, Australia and Canada markets. Last year, Zomato had acquired dominant local restaurant search players in New Zealand, Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Turkey and Italy.

Its biggest competitor in the US is Yelp, which is also the biggest player in the business. In the domestic market, Zomato will start online ordering operations in Bangalore and Mumbai by end of May. “The product will hit the market with around 4,000 restaurant partners as of now. Over the next few months, we are aiming to offer this feature with over 10,000 restaurant partners in India,” Zomato co-founder and chief executive Deepinder Goyal said.

“We are hoping to start processing around 40,000 orders a day in the very near term,” he added. He expects revenues to double in the next fiscal with this new stream of revenue model. “Through this we will charge restaurants a commission based on the rating of the outlets,” Goyal added.

Zomato competes with Foodpanda in the NCR region and with Tiny Owl in Mumbai. Zomato, along with online marketplaces Flipkart, Snapdeal, and cab aggregator Ola are among the highest valued tech-enabled platforms currently in the country, backed by private capital, according to analyst reports.