As the global battle for online food delivery heats up, Bangalore-based Swiggy has raised $16.5 million in additional funding to make a play for the Indian market. Swiggy launched in Bangalore in August last year with a curated takeout delivery service targeting young, working professionals. While many food delivery apps rely on restaurant employees for delivery services, Swiggy has hired its own delivery fleet, powered by a routing algorithm, to maximize speed and efficiency. This makes the payment process more convenient as well — there’s no minimum order amount, and customers can choose from multiple online payment options. Norwest Venture Partners led the Series B round, and existing investors Accel Partners and SAIF Partners participated. The funding will power expansion into several additional Indian cities this year, following recent launches in Gurgaon and Hyderabad. “Food delivery [in India] is a $6 billion market, which is completely mobile app driven, focused on the young working-age population with high-frequency usage,” says Sumer Juneja, who led the round for NVP. Swiggy is one of 14 India-based food or grocery delivery startups that have raised venture funding in the past year, according to CrunchBase. Mumbai-based food delivery app TinyOwl has raised a total of $20 million from Sequoia and Matrix, and Gurgaon-based grocery delivery service PepperTap announced $10 million in Series A funding (also from Sequoia) in April. Despite being a late entrant to an increasingly crowded space, Swiggy has distinguished itself by providing a curated list of restaurants and dishes, as well as ensuring an exact delivery time. Founder Sriharsha Majety says Swiggy has seen a 10x growth in order numbers over the past few months, with over half of daily orders placed through the mobile app. “This space is crowded right now, but we will see consolidation over the next couple of years,” says Mukul Arora of SAIF Partners, who is also an investor in PepperTap. “Our strong belief is that the winner will be the player which offers the best customer experience,” Arora says.
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