Reacting to a report that said it was entering into food delivery business, 10-minute delivery startup Zepto has issued a statement that this is not the case. A report on Moneycontrol.com said Zepto had joined the 10-minute food delivery business as well, with a ‘Cafe’ in Mumbai. However, the company said it is testing a ‘Zepto Cafe format’ in Mumbai, where it is delivering ready-to-drink coffee, tea, and packaged snacks to customers.
In a statement, the company said, “We launched the Zepto Cafe format as a pilot a few weeks ago, and we’ve seen an incredible response from customers. We’re going to continue tweaking the model for quite some time so we can perfect the customer experience and unit economics before scaling.”
It further adds, “Let me clarify that we are not doing food delivery. This is a Café format, with ready-to-drink coffee, chai, and packaged snacks (like biscuits and sandwiches). We don’t want to get distracted from our core business by building a complex supply chain for food delivery, where it’s difficult to control quality.”
According to Moneycontrol.com, Zepto’s free food delivery is valid for orders above Rs 99 and the startup has tied up with restaurants such as Blue Tokai Coffee, Chaayos, etc, with some select items being delivered in 10 minutes. This sparked speculation that the app would also enter the food-delivery business, though the company now states this is not the case.
Earlier, Zomato had said it would enter the 10-minute food delivery format called Zomato Instant, though the company has not given an exact timeline on when this will roll out. Zomato’s decision had sparked criticism on social media with users pointing out that this would make it more difficult for delivery partners, who already face crushing timelines. Others had pointed out questions about quality of food being delivered in 10 minutes.
Goyal had then responded to the criticism stating that the company would not fine delivery partners for any delay. He also clarified that the 10-minute service would only be for “specific nearby locations, popular and standardised items only.”