London food delivery startup Deliveroo launches in Australia looking to change how we think about takeaway

- November 25, 2015 3 MIN READ

You’ve finished a long hard day at work and all you want to do is take off your clothes and unwind in front of the TV. When you’re all relaxed you start thinking about food, but you don’t think about McDonald’s or the local Chinese takeaway, you think about that fancy restaurant you went to on the weekend. That main course was out of this world, but you’re not in the mood to get dressed and leave the house, in fact you barely want to leave the couch; how amazing would it be if they delivered?

That’s the concept behind Deliveroo, a restaurant delivery startup founded in London two years ago by Greg Orlowski and William Shu, who wanted to bring high-end food into households. This year the company launched its global expansion around Europe, Dubai, Singapore, Hong Kong and, now, Australia.

Deliveroo is just the latest food delivery startup to hit our doorsteps, joining a number of services including Menulog, Delivery Hero, and EatNow. However Levi Aron, Deliveroo’s country manager for Australia, doesn’t quite see the other services as competition. In fact, though the core service is the same, he believes Deliveroo does something different by delivering food only from mid to high-end restaurants – restaurants that traditionally don’t deliver.

“With Deliveroo in the market, you’re able to have things delivered to your office or home, premium foods, through a premium delivery service in a very short amount of time. It’s something that’s a very new category,” Aron said. 

With Australia’s food scene growing fast, consumers have developed high expectations of quality and diversity when it comes to dining in and out. As such, Aron believes that Australia is a very lucrative market for Deliveroo and that the demand for high-end delivery services is high. Until now, the type of food associated with delivery is low-end foods like burgers and pizzas. Deliveroo wants to open Australian consumers to a new category where, from the touch of a button, a five star steak can be delivered to their work or home space.

“These are restaurants that you might go out with your partner or friends on a monthly basis, you really enjoy the food, but how awesome would that be if you could get that same food delivered to you,” said Aron.

Deliveroo has teamed up with over 150 restaurants throughout Sydney and Melbourne. Aron said this figure is growing on a weekly basis thanks to their positive relationship with restaurants and the listing of consumer suggestions. Users will be able to download the Deliveroo app where, like the other services, they can type in their address to find what restaurants in their zone have jumped on board. A simple click on the restaurant opens up a menu where the user can add items and then order.

“Over the last five years Australia has really become the foodie nation, developing a fascination with food and embracing everything from fine dining, festivals to food trucks. The response to date by restaurants has been fantastic, with Deliveroo’s technology-driven approach to premium food delivery resonating with restaurant owners looking to grow their business. We offer a new category of high quality and reliable delivery service that enhances their brand and the experience they can bring to customers,” Aron said.

When Australians think of food Aron wants them to think of Deliveroo. His mission is to get local restaurants on board to maximise their brand in an efficient and sustainable. ‘Get your local restaurant on board’ is a section of the app that encourages users to nominate their favourite locals that they want to see Deliveroo team up with. It’s a way to build up a community of lazy foodies and premium restaurants.

The company believes that the restaurants they partner with can increase their kitchen capacity to more than 30 percent in revenue. Deliveroo takes a flat fee of $5 for the delivery on top of the restaurant bill, and takes a further percentage off the total payment for their service. 

Fresh from closing a $100 million Series D funding round just a few days ago, Deliveroo has the cash to stick it out in Australia and make its presence felt in the market among the competition. Aron said the next 12 months will be spent on saturating the Melbourne and Sydney markets before looking to other cities.

Image: Levi Aron, Source: Supplied