The National Restaurant Association of India (NRAI) reached an agreement to resolve the issues faced by deep discounting in a meeting with representatives from Zomato and Swiggy on Thursday.
On Monday, the restaurant body sent out official letters to Zomato, UberEats, Swiggy and foodpanda – the big four of the Indian online delivery scene – in an effort to bring parity and safeguard the interests of its partner restaurants. In the meeting between the NRAI and Zomato and Swiggy executives, there were discussions to resolve the serious issues concerning the unsustainable discounts offered by aggregators.
Led by president Rahul Singh, who is the owner and CEO of The Beer Café, the NRAI has been tied up in a conflict with online food delivery apps over deep discounting for weeks now.
Starting out as the #Logout campaign, it spread like wildfire and attracted the attention of all aggregators to revisit their discounting policies and provide better deals to restaurateurs who feel short-changed.
In a statement, Anurag Katriar, head of NRAI’s Mumbai Chapter, said that the parties deliberated on eight critical issues. “Both Swiggy and Zomato deduced issues of deep discounting, high and uneven commission charges, data masking and mandatory bundling of services, which are crippling the restaurant industry,” he said. “There is an in-principle agreement to resolve the issues within [a] specific timeline.”
Katriar added that after broadly outlining the resolutions of each issue, the three bodies are “tentatively scheduled to reconvene in the second week of September to update the reformation progress”.
On August 22, Zomato CEO Deepinder Goyal tweeted that his company was no longer participating the movement, confirming it was “logging out of the logout campaign”. This prompted the NRAI’s to respond with the #ZoGoIsNoGo campaign, asking restaurants to keep out of Zomato Gold.
Katriar had earlier spoken of calls for
expanding the #Logout movement to the online delivery vertical as well but reiterated that the restaurant body wanted to tread responsibly and actively engage with the bodies. But in the statement, he said Zomato began the meeting on a false footing. “They stated their intention to introduce Zomato Gold on the delivery vertical as well. This is an entirely unacceptable proposition to [the] NRAI, due to the stated stance of #ZoGoIsNoGo.”
He continued that Swiggy’s approach was fairly constructive in the back-to-back meetings, "They understood all our viewpoints, and promised to come back with an actionable plan in the follow-up meeting."The statement concluded on a conflicting note, "On one hand, NRAI is determined to eradicate the epidemic of deep discounting for dine-in restaurants, whereas Zomato seems to just extend the same to the delivery business. Despite the abrupt beginning, other issues were discussed at length and Zomato will examine them at their end and revert in the follow-up meeting.