India’s top digital payment companies are courting some of the largest restaurant chains in the country to grab a pie of the rapidly digitising dining industry, which has been ravaged by the Covid-19 pandemic.
They may also tie up with third party logistics providers and give restaurants an option to facilitate home deliveries.
The expansion drive comes from a belief that resumption of offline businesses, including dining, could be led by mandatory contactless services.
India is currently relaxing its nationwide lockdown in phases.
Paytm has tied up with chains managed by Azure Hospitality and Lite Bite foods, along with brands such as Costa Coffee, Mad Over Donuts (MOD), Keventers, Belgian Waffles, and Barista, a company spokesperson said.
According to documents accessed by ET, the Noida-based financial services company is offering a one-time set-up fee of Rs 1,999 plus GST for a chain with less than four outlets, and Rs 4,999 plus GST for those restaurants with more than five outlets.
There is also a per month commission of Rs 999 per store.
Further, according to a presentation docket used for pitches at restaurants, Paytm is attempting to create the restaurant order flow on its ‘MyStore’ stack, a newly introduced social commerce platform that allows offline businesses to sell their goods online.
Paytm did not confirm the development, but a company spokesperson said, “We are aiming to empower over 1 lakh restaurants across India in the first phase.”
Meanwhile, Unified Payments Interface (UPI) leader Google Pay has also begun conversations with top restaurant chains to bring outlets onto its ‘Spot’ platform.
Google’s Spot allows offline merchants to provide select online services directly through the application.
Google Pay did not immediately respond to ET’s queries.
Walmart-owned PhonePe, too, has tied up with popular fast food chains such KFC, Domino’s and Faasos for its ‘Switch’ platform that enables a one-click checkout experience for online order with partner restaurants.
“For example, in-dining/offline merchants can upload their menu on PhonePe for Business app which will manifest on the stores section where customers can browse the menu and make payments using multiple payment modes, as well as through the PhonePe QR code,” said Vivek Lohcheb, Head of Offline Business Development, PhonePe.
“For online ordering, we are offering a full-stack solution via the Switch platform for all restaurants having an online presence,” he added.
Restaurant industry executives believe that partnerships with digital payment companies can bring in a large base of customers who are already used to accessing offline services by paying online.
“These apps have millions of users, and help them discover restaurants nearby, which is an added advantage for us,” the CEO of a restaurant chain, who did not wish to be named, said.
Meanwhile, Dotpe, which is another emerging payments startup, has tied up with National Restaurant Association of India (NRAI) to provide food outlets with contactless payments solutions.
ET has reviewed a copy of its presentation.
Food technology startups such as Dineout and Zomato, as well as smaller niche companies are also offering the same service to eateries, which eliminates the need for diners to touch valet receipts, menus, and bill copies.
Restaurants are one of the hardest-hit sectors in the pandemic and fighting for survival.
Before the Covid-19 pandemic struck, the restaurant industry recorded an annual turnover of Rs 4 lakh crore and provided direct employment to over 7 million, according to data from NRAI.
While Zomato and Swiggy have seen orders recover to 60% of pre-Covid-19 levels, the food delivery platforms believe that lost ground can be made only by year end.