From Foodlet To Zomato : Deepinder Goyal On Lessons Learned #UnPluggd

Last UnPluggd, Deepinder Goyal (CEO of Zomato) spoke about going from to, (almost) getting a legal notice from eBay,  re-branding to Zomato in 2010 and everything in between.

Global Expansion:

By 2012, Zomato  had beaten burpp & were the biggest players in town. They had 2 options: Stay in the country and launch more verticals or take the same business to more geographies. They went with the latter and that has made all the difference. They launched in Dubai in 2012 and within 6 months of their presence in Dubai they started getting more traffic than the population of Dubai. Currently, Zomato has its presence in over 23 countries and across 10,000 cities.

Key Lesson Learnt:

One size fits all, doesn’t actually work when you are launching in multiple markets. You need to customize your product to fit local markets.


Post 2014, Zomato spread its wings and acquired 6 global restaurant listing companies including Urbanspoon. Acquisition of Urbanspoon  was a strategic move to enter the Canadian & Australian market and not US (according to the popular belief)

Pick your battles wisely. If you run away from the battle that might kill you, then you might actually live to fight another day!


Deepinder Goyal believes that there is a certain amount of discipline that is needed to make startup work.  Discipline, Teamwork  & Trust  are the three most important pillars of  zomato’s culture.

Investors and funding:

Zomato was bootstrapped for the first 2 years and used to execute a lot, even with very little money in the bank.

Key Lesson Learnt:

Do not build a business for investors , keep on building and one day people will believe in what you are building.

There are a lot VC’s in the industry who believe that money can solve every problem, disrupt any market & build any business  – avoid them!  

There is much more than money which goes into building a great company and If you have the right thing to say –  anyone will listen to you!

Revenue Model:

Highly targeted banner  ads on the website generate the majority of the revenue for Zomato.  Zomato claims to have a click through rate of 17%  & out of which 8% of the clicks translates into real business for those restaurants.

Road Ahead

Going full stack on food tech & to make Zomato a utility app which integrates restaurant discovery, online ordering, table reservations , delivery & to bind everything together with Point of sale.

The Next edition of UnPluggd is scheduled for 6th & 7th of May 2016 in Bangalore where you’ll learn how to build great products and sustain during tough times!  The #Superheroes edition will focus on deeper content and actionable insights.To know more, check out

UnPluggd Details

Date: May 6th And 7th
Venue: Park Plaza hotel (Marathahalli), Bangalore
BUY tickets from here .

Use coupon code SUPERAPRIL to book tickets at 20% off (expires on 30th April).

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