The National Restaurants Association of India on Friday said it would not support Zomato launching its Gold programme on food delivery.
Zomato Gold, in a message to existing subscribers, said the premium membership programme which entitles subscribers to free dishes on their dine-in restaurant orders, will be expanding to 25 new cities and will also be available on Zomato delivery services.
Calling the extension of Zomato Gold to delivery a “desperate attempt” by Zomato to save the programme, NRAI said, “It is also another instance of Zomato changing the goalpost; Gold was originally launched as a tool to promote the culture of “Dining out” but now it is being extended on delivery too! Essentially, it is now a program that merely promotes deep discounts on both dine-in and delivery verticals, the cost of which is borne solely by the restaurant partners.”
The restaurants” trade body met Swiggy and Zomato last week to hold talks, barring any significant progress on the Zomato Gold program.
“The NRAI remains steadfast in its belief that Zomato Gold in its current form is not acceptable in either dine-in or delivery segment.
A Zomato spokesperson said that it continues to have discussions with the NRAI on all issues faced by the industry and “is focused on providing solutions sustainable for all participants”.
The restaurant’s trade body held its second meeting with both the key delivery aggregators, Swiggy and Zomato on September 13.
These were follow-up meetings after the NRAI flagged eight critical issues pertaining to the online delivery space which are crippling this vertical of the foodservice industry.
The association said since the desired changes are fairly large and significant, their total resolution may take some time.
The newly-appointed NRAI managing committee is slated to meet this week in Mumbai to deliberate upon the progress made and subsequently decide the next course of action.
NRAI said extension of Gold to delivery would be “suicidal” for the vertical.