The Indian food tech market is expected to grow at a 12% CAGR till 2021 and this will be spurred by the changing lifestyle patterns, increase in the millennial working population and due to the rise in the number of smartphone users.
One such restaurant-based startup which made a debut in the market is EazyDiner. Established in the year 2014, EazyDiner enables its customers to go through the restaurant menu, helps them book a restaurant and dine out with comfort.
Since its inception, the startup has roped-in more than 6000 restaurants across prominent cities in India and it is also operational in Dubai.
AIM caught up with Rohit Dasgupta, CEO and co-founder, to know how the startup is using emerging technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) and also about their tech stacks.
Since the startup has a large pool of data and requires a high degree of personalisation, AI and ML have been used right from managing recommendation engine to cuisine preferences, “Our recommendation engine looks at multiple factors like previous bookings of customers, cuisine preferences, cost, availability and then recommends the same to the customers. We are now enhancing our recommendation engine using collaborative filtering,” Dasgupta points out.
In addition, EazyDiner depends on algorithms to handle a large pool of customer requests and to manage their inventory, “We have an algorithm that understands how the inventory works in a given restaurant on a given day and time. We keep releasing the inventory as we go closer to dining times to enable restaurants to fill up those seats,” Dasgupta adds.
Tech stacks to run the show
While for the hosted service EazyDiner uses AWS, its platform is a mix of PHP, Java, Python, AngularJS and Redis and Akamai for data caching. “We use Elastic Search, MongoDB and MySql to power our transaction, search and discovery platform. We use Google BigQuery for our data analytics,” explains Dasgupta.
Presently, the startup is working towards digitising the restaurants with their SAAS product, which will help restaurants to plan their meal periods like lunch and dinner seatings better for optimal utilisation of seats and selling the last table. Hence maximising revenue even during busy periods and low occupancy times as well.
To the question of the extent of competition from the likes of Swiggy and Zomata, Dasgupta points out that the Indian food tech market is too big and diverse for a few Unicorns to prevent the growth of other players ,"India is expected to have 440 million millennials by 2020 who will spend almost a third of their income on eating out and entertainment. The F&B industry is also poised to grow to 600 lakh crores by 2023 and we believe it’s a huge market for multiple unicorns or startups to co-exist,” Dasgupta points out.
Presently in the Indian food tech market, there is no dearth of players and it is a competition that is driving innovation. The number of players is only likely to increase as India is expected to have 440 million millennials by 2020 who will spend almost a third of their income on eating out and entertainment. The F&B industry is also poised to grow to 600 lakh crores by 2023.
EazyDiner has raised three rounds of funding, with the latest being held in 2018, where it raised $5.85 million in a Series C funding round from Denlow Investment Trust and Beenext.
EazyDiner has grown more than 3.5X every year since its inception and 10X in the last 2 years and it is expecting a growth rate for FY 19-20 as well. In 2018 it also launched EazyDiner Prime, which has also resulted in the startup's growth.
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Akshaya Asokan works as a Technology Journalist at Analytics India Magazine. She has previously worked with IDG Media and The New Indian Express. When not writing, she can be seen either reading or staring at a flower.