Robinhood, a food delivery service operating in Thailand has been awarded the 2021 Nikkei Superior Products and Services Award.

Robinhood is a food delivery platform operating in Thailand under Siam Commercial Bank (SCB), a top backer. The company is among the winners of the 2021 Nikkei Superior Products and Services Award. 

2.3 million users have flocked to the app since its debut in Bangkok in October 2020. Notably, Robinhood does not charge restaurants commission fees, making it popular compared to other food delivery services. 

According to users, the app “often offers larger discounts than other delivery services,” and has “better value” than other food delivery service providers like GrabFood, a subsidiary of Singapore-based company Grab Holdings, whose primary service is a ride-hailing service. 

Unlike most food delivery platforms that charge commissions to restaurants as a percentage of the prices of orders, Robinhood generates revenue through loan-providing and advertising fees. Thus, restaurants can offer discounts to customers, because commissions are no longer a concern. 

Over 164 thousand restaurants were available on the Robinhood app by October 2021, with orders totalling TH฿3.3 billion in its first year of operation. 

Thana Thienachariya, the chairman of Purple Ventures, Robinhood app developer and operator, stated, “Robinhood has become a medium-sized platform that ranks No. 3 or No. 4 in Bangkok and surrounding areas.”

The company plans to expand operations in 2022 to include Chiang Mai and Phuket, with a yearly target of 4 million customers and 300,000 restaurants available. 

Thailand, like the rest of the world, has experienced an expansion of the food delivery service industry, because of dining restrictions put in place by Covid-19. The Kasikorn Research Center, a private think tank, has estimated that this market grew by 46% in 2021, with this figure predicted to increase in 2022. 

SCB is hoping to continue developing Robinhood to create a “superapp,” which will provide more services. They are planning a complete digital upgrade to the platform in 2022, by using its network of motorcycle drivers to deliver orders from supermarkets, e-commerce platforms and other companies with an online presence. 

In addition, the app is set to develop into “an online travel agent with bookings for hotels, air tickets, travel activities, car rentals, and travel insurance as an option for small and midsize enterprises to save costs on online travel agency commissions and fees,” according to Srihanath Lamsam, the managing director of Purple Ventures.

Nevertheless, Robinhood is still operating in the red because of the large initial investment. The company needs to gather another TH฿4 to 5 billion over the next two years, according to Purple Ventures. The app developer may attempt to raise funds from SCB and other investors. 

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