wordpress blog stats
Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

Zomato acquires logistics-tech company Sparse Labs


Zomato has acquired Sparse labs, a two and half year old bootstrapped logistics-tech company founded by Pankaj Batra, to address an area where it has “immense room for improvement” – the tracking of delivery. Incidentally, Batra once worked as the Technical Architect at StudyPlaces, a company which Zomato backer Info Edge had also funded.

Sparse Labs has a lightweight Android application which helps restaurants track and optimise their in-house delivery fleet, by transmitting a delivery-persons location to both the restaurant and the user in real-time, as well as giving the delivery-person route information. The app will be renamed Zomato Trace. (hmm… trace-route?)

This acquisition may help Zomato and its logistics partners, but is likely to fit with their B2B business as well. However, Zomato will be offering Trace to restaurants for free, “very soon”. According to Zomato “the system also allocates orders to riders based on their proximity to the restaurant, and uses machine learning to identify a rider’s familiarity with a neighbourhood to further optimise delivery efficiency. Restaurants also have the option of using a proprietary GPS tracker developed by Sparse, that can be fitted onto bikes.”

According to its website, Sparse Labs works with Bueno Kitchen, Chop Chop, Cook Gourmet, Food Port, Pick my laundry, Quilvery, The Spice Lab, Whomely, Waiters on Wheels, Zaza Box.

MediaNama’s Take

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

This helps only if it improves delivery time. As a customer the way I see it, I care for a few key things: that the food is delivered to me in time (and is preferably hot), that it’s packaged in a manner that it doesn’t spill, the food tastes great, and that the delivery guy doesn’t call every 3.5 minutes asking for directions. Three of these things depend on the delivery of the service, and anyone who can solve this problem will be the preferred provider in the market. It’s like telecom and network quality: the cheapest service won’t find many takers if the network isn’t good enough.

In any case, Zomato prefers to have restaurants deliver. Take Rate for Zomato when restaurants deliver, the last time the company spoke about it, in May this year, was 8.2% (and 6-7% for larger chains and Quick Service Restaurants). They also make Rs 20 as contribution margin when restaurants deliver, and lose Rs 2 when their logistics partners deliver. The average delivery time (for when restaurants deliver, which was 80% of orders) mentioned then was around 38 minutes, a couple of minutes more when logistics partners delivered.

More from that very long discussion here.

Disclosure: Info Edge is an advertiser with MediaNama

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.
Written By

Founder @ MediaNama. TED Fellow. Asia21 Fellow @ Asia Society. Co-founder SaveTheInternet.in and Internet Freedom Foundation. Advisory board @ CyberBRICS

MediaNama’s mission is to help build a digital ecosystem which is open, fair, global and competitive.



While the market reality of popular crypto-assets like Bitcoin may undergo little change, the same can't be said for stablecoins.


Bringing transactions related to crypto-assets within the tax net could make matters less fuzzy.


Loopholes in FEMA and the decentralised nature of crypto-assets point to a need for effective regulations.


The need of the hour is for lawmakers to understand the systems that are amplifying harmful content.


For drone delivery to become a reality, a permissive regulatory regime is a prerequisite.

You May Also Like


Google has released a Google Travel Trends Report which states that branded budget hotel search queries grew 179% year over year (YOY) in India, in...


135 job openings in over 60 companies are listed at our free Digital and Mobile Job Board: If you’re looking for a job, or...


Rajesh Kumar* doesn’t have many enemies in life. But, Uber, for which he drives a cab everyday, is starting to look like one, he...


By Aroon Deep and Aditya Chunduru You’re reading it here first: Twitter has complied with government requests to censor 52 tweets that mostly criticised...

MediaNama is the premier source of information and analysis on Technology Policy in India. More about MediaNama, and contact information, here.

© 2008-2021 Mixed Bag Media Pvt. Ltd. Developed By PixelVJ

Subscribe to our daily newsletter
Your email address:*
Please enter all required fields Click to hide
Correct invalid entries Click to hide

© 2008-2021 Mixed Bag Media Pvt. Ltd. Developed By PixelVJ