Home >Companies >News >NRAI takes on Zomato and Paytm, partners with Dotpe to offer digital ordering solution
Photo: PTI
Photo: PTI

NRAI takes on Zomato and Paytm, partners with Dotpe to offer digital ordering solution

The move comes at a time when restaurants across the country have been severely impacted due to the country-wide lockdown announced to contain the spread of covid-19, and worked on limited capacity to fulfill delivery-only orders

The National Restaurant Association of India (NRAI) has partnered with Gurgaon-based O2O commerce startup Dotpe, to launch a digital ordering solution for restaurants to ensure minimal human touch while ordering and settling the bill.

The move comes at a time when restaurants across the country have been severely impacted due to the country-wide lockdown announced to contain the spread of covid-19, and worked on limited capacity to fulfill delivery-only orders.

In a Facebook Live session hosted by the NRAI, several members of the association also outlined key steps by the association including building a loyalty program and working on alternate home delivery models for its restaurant partners—as it seeks find solutions that will help reduce the dependance of restaurants on existing online food aggregators Zomato and Swiggy.

The digital ordering solution competes with food tech unicorn Zomato’s ‘contactless’ dining feature as well as Fintech unicorn, Paytm’s 'Contactless In-store Ordering’ solution, which were launched, last month.

Once the lockdown is lifted, NRAI members can use the Dotpe’s QR based catalogue and e-commerce platform, allowing guests to order through this catalogue and make the payment through the phone, while remaining seated.

Further, Dotpe’s QR-based digital commerce and payments solution is expected to help NRAI member restaurants to connect with their customers directly through WhatsApp. This way restaurants can build their own omni-channel digital platform and in the process own the customer completely, members of NRAI said.

“I am extremely happy to announce our partnership with Dotpe for this critical solution for the Industry, which will be especially useful in the post-pandemic era. We are committed to take better control of our business and our customer data and become digitally more self-reliant as an Industry. While NRAI has spearheaded this initiative, I firmly believe that this solution will benefit the entire F&B fraternity at large, benefitting lakhs of small restaurants across the country," said Anurag Katriar, President of NRAI; CEO & Executive Director of deGustibus Hospitality Pvt. Ltd.

In August, last year, NRAI and its restaurants started the logout movement, and started pulling out of food aggregator platforms including Zomato, Gold, Gourmet Passport by Dineout, amongst others as a protest against hefty discounting and offers rolled out to customers

“NRAI was worried with the trend of several key decision-making getting gradually usurped by these new-age digital landlords and is committed to build tech solutions where core business decisions will be made by business owners. NRAI also seeks singular right over customer data for the business owners and not the marketplace owners. NRAI wants a transparent ecosystem which benefits all," said the restaurant body in a statement.

“By collaborating with Dotpe, the restaurants will now be able to stay transparent with the customers by communicating with them directly through WhatsApp for all the online orders. Meanwhile, there’s no need for customers to download any additional app as they can start ordering food by simply scanning a QR code once," said Shailaz Nag, founder, Dotpe.

NRAI members will be able to avail the digital ordering services at a low flat fee rather than a percentage based commission. Further this technology will be used across a handful of restaurants, at present, as and when consumer resume visiting eateries again.

These include restaurants such as Haldiram’s, Social, Smoke House Delhi, Cafe Delhi Heights and Fab café.

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