India’s popular online food and restaurant guide, Zomato, has announced that it is expanding to include a section for London, England. The service subsequently has coverage of popular food spots in 18 cities in India, the UAE, Sri Lanka, and now the United Kingdom too.
According to the announcement, the London section now has over 14,000 restaurants listed, and they are adding content for about 500 more per day. Initially I thought that the high population of Indian emigrants in the UK might have been a motivating factor in Zomato’s decision to roll out London listings. But I’m told by a Zomato representative that while it is a certainly an advantage in getting a kickstart there, it was not one of the most significant factors. According to the company’s blog, the initial idea appears to have been somewhat whimsical. Zomato CEO Deepinder Goyal writes:
The evening of November 20th, 2012, sipping tea in our office, we were discussing the beauty of London during Christmas. Naturally, the conversation steered towards restaurants in London and how much fun it would be to spend Christmas in London while eating at some of the best restaurants in the world. Somewhere in the middle of the casual banter, someone jokingly said, “This Christmas, Zomato is coming to London”. This was followed by complete silence… and some goosebumps.
If you’d like to try out the new Zomato London section, you can head over to zomato.com/london. Right now access is by invitation only, but if you request one I expect the folks at Zomato will let you in.
The company aspires to further expand later in the year, with more coverage in Europe, the Middle East, and South East Asia, although a representative says they have yet to settle on any specific cities.
Currently Zomato sees more than 9 million people each month using its services, so it will be interesting to see how quickly and how far the New Delhi-based company can grow beyond that user base.