Global e-commerce giant Amazon has now finally launched its food delivery service, Amazon Food. The company has reportedly launched in select areas in Bengaluru like Bellandur, Haralur, Marathalli and Whitefield. The network will reportedly expand to other cities, with higher density in a few weeks.
Amazon has constructed its proprietary hygiene certification bar, which is important as people are avoiding food deliveries to a large extent due to the growing coronavirus outbreak in the country. The company has also claimed that it is “adhering to the highest standards of safety” to convince people to use its platform even during the pandemic.
“We are launching Amazon Food in select Bengaluru pin codes allowing customers to order from handpicked local restaurants and cloud kitchens that pass our high hygiene certification bar. We are adhering to the highest standards of safety to ensure our customers remain safe while having a delightful experience,” an Amazon spokesperson said.
Amazon has been working on the platform since the middle of last year. Earlier, Amazon was looking to launch around Diwali, but later it was postponed to December and now to early 2020. Amazon’s food delivery business is meant to create a more robust product portfolio, which has everything from entertainment to groceries to electronics, under the Amazon Prime banner.
In February, reports surfaced that Amazon will conduct a pilot in Bengaluru for its much-anticipated food delivery platform, which was expected to be launched in a couple of weeks. Amazon has been luring eateries with competitive commissions as a part of its larger plan to build a comprehensive product portfolio – from grocery and food to electronics and home products.
Amazon’s foray into the food delivery market could create new challenges for Prosus Ventures-backed Swiggy, and Zomato, an 11-year-old startup that acquired Uber’s Eats business in India in January this year, and Google-backed Dunzo, which operates in Bangalore and counts food delivery as one of the biggest parts of its business.
In difficult times for such market leaders, Amazon’s latest launch can be another push in the gut for these companies.
Swiggy and Zomato, having raised more than $2 billion together, are still not profitable and are losing more than $15 million each month to acquire new customers and sustain existing ones. Amazon has launched Amazon’s Prime Now and Amazon Fresh platforms in India to sell perishables and grocery items in recent years and expanded its warehouses in several parts of the country along the way.