The Bengaluru-based table reservations platform, EveningFlavors, recently raised a $500k round of funding from independent angel investor Sandiep Shrivatsava for expansion across India.
“Considering the growth in this sector, it was the right time to scale up. The spirited team has cashed on the time spent in the domain, and now they have a stronghold on the practices needed to make it shine. I believe it's time for EveningFlavors to make a big dent in the food services sector,” said Sandiep Shrivatasava in an email to YourStory.
YourStory wrote about EveningFlavors back in 2009 when four enthusiastic foodie techies co-founded this company. (Read full story here)
“A lot has changed over the last six years,” said Akash Shrivatsava, CEO and Founder, who solely handles the company right now. “We have gone through a full design change and a complete rebranding over the last few years with the added offering of online reservations in real time.”
When the company was launched in Bengaluru the reservations were all manual and done by customer care executives in a call centre. Now almost everything is done online while the call centre handles customer queries.
Akash raised his first small round of funding of $35k in 2011 from his network of friends and family. With that investment, he slowly expanded into cities, including Hyderabad, Kolkata, Delhi, Mumbai and Pune.
Today, we have almost 1,000 fine dining restaurants on board, and are introducing the discounts and deals part soon too. Restaurants are more than willing to give 30% and 40% discounts for promotions and customer acquisition. We want to tap that segment.
EveningFlavors currently makes reservations for over 1,000 customers in a day across the existing cities, and plans to expand into Tier-2 cities like Indore, Goa and Surat in the upcoming phase. The company reports annual revenues of over INR 1.5 crores just from commissions made from bookings and reservations.
As the number of startups in the food ordering and delivery sector increase, competition is becoming stiff. Even VCs are starting to look for a variety in product offerings and ease of technology integrations. (Read about why VCs love the foodtech sector.)
In the future, we will be looking into a premium pay-and-reserve model for those restaurants and pubs that are touchy about making free reservations. Also, we will be exploring ticketing for the events space. We are moving toward becoming a hybrid of Zomato and BookMyShow.