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Monday, 18 May, 2020, 14 : 00 PM [IST]

Stakeholders bat for innovation to tide over the pandemic crisis

Hail MMT’s move to foray into food delivery as step in the right direction
At a time when revenues from airlines and hotel bookings have come to a standstill and recovery post lifting of the lockdown seems to be an arduous process, innovation seems to be the order of the day in the new normal world. Working in this direction, MakeMyTrip has extended its partnership with its partners in the luxury, premium and independent hotels space across India to deliver gourmet meals to the customers’ homes starting with Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai and Bengaluru. 

This development comes at a time when the lockdown is expected to cut 40-50 per cent revenue of the country's organised dine-in restaurants this fiscal, and even post lifting of the lockdown, they are not expected to resume full operations anytime soon, as per a CRISIL Research. 

Industry stakeholders at various webinars and e-panel discussions have been stressing on stepping out of the comfort zones, and adopting innovative measures to stay relevant post lockdown since social distancing norms will change the business scenario completely.

Welcoming the move by MakeMyTrip (MMT), Rajiv Duggal, Director, Travel Specialists LLP, who has dabbled across hospitality as well as tourism industries, says that it is interesting that the online travel giant in these almost zero revenue days has come up with a new business proposition of delivering quality food. “Ordering and having the delicious food from Saffron at JW Marriott, Juhu or from The Kheer at Roseate House, Aerocity sounds impossible in today’s times, but if MMT is going to make that a reality, amazing is the word. Unquestionably hygiene and quality that these outlets anyway excel in, backed by a trusted name like MMT, would be the correct mix.” 

Duggal believes that going forward what has to be seen is the pricing, and demand. “But I am sure MMT has taken that into consideration. All I can say that is an innovative step and will be a success.”  

According to E M Najeeb, Chairman & MD, ATE Group of Companies, businesses are finding new ways to survive in this hour of crisis. “Delivery food from five-star hotels is a good vertical for diversification because customers are assured of quality.” He pointed out that if a brand like MMT that specialises into holidays has forayed into a new vertical it clearly indicates that the tourism industry will take time to return to normalcy. “It’s a good move, and I appreciate MMT for diversifying into this vertical.”

Echoing similar views, Subhash Goyal, Chairman, STIC Travel Group, says, “All of us in this hour of crisis should think how can we diversify and utilise our existing resources not only to serve the country, but also at sustain in these unprecedented times. This move by MMT will definitely inspire others to think of similar out-of-the-box ideas.”

As part of this development, MMT is providing delivery of select delicacies from K3 and Delhi Baking Company at JW Marriott (Delhi); Roasted by Roseate and The Kheer at Roseate House (Delhi); Limelight and Ging & Pinxx at Royal Orchid (Bengaluru); 24/7 Restaurant at The Lalit (Mumbai), The Right Place and Chin Chin at The Residency (Chennai) along with exclusive delivery options from The Park, Radisson and a few others in the Delhi-NCR region. MMT will be delivering orders through third-party service providers in respective cities. 

Commenting on this diversification, Deepak Tuli, Chief Business Officer, Emerging Businesses, MakeMyTrip, stated, “As the world adopts life-altering measures to adjust to the new order, customers are seeking options that can help them with familiar experiences in safe and hygienic environment. Our new online gourmet delivery initiative is a step towards ensuring that food-lovers continue to enjoy their in-city fine-dining experiences by bringing their eating-out adventures to their homes. We are excited to rollout this offering together with our hotel partners, who are pushing the envelope to continue to offer unique and authentic hospitality experiences for our customers while they remain indoors practicing physical distancing to fight coronavirus.”

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