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December 17, 2020

HungryPanda’s $70m in funding highlights the promise of cuisine-specific delivery platforms

HungryPanda, an international Chinese food and grocery delivery platform established in 2016, has raised over $70m in funding, with approximately half of that being raised by Swedish investment firm Kinnevik. The delivery platform is unique from its competitors, such as Uber Eats or Deliveroo, as it focuses solely on overseas Chinese populations, offering a specialized and tailored user experience that helps Chinese speakers find authentic Asian foods.

HungryPanda, an international Chinese food and grocery delivery platform established in 2016, has raised over $70m in funding, with approximately half of that being raised by Swedish investment firm Kinnevik. The delivery platform is unique from its competitors, such as Uber Eats or Deliveroo, as it focuses solely on overseas Chinese populations, offering a specialized and tailored user experience that helps Chinese speakers find authentic Asian foods.

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What is the impact of China’s Zero-COVID lockdowns on economic activity, consumer goods and the foodservice industry?

While wanting to protect the country from being overwhelmed by Omicron, China’s adherence to a Zero-COVID policy is resulting in a significant economic downturn. COVID outbreaks in Shanghai, Beijing and many other Chinese cities will impact 2022’s economic growth as consumers and businesses experience rolling lockdowns, leading to a slowdown in domestic and international supply chains. China’s Zero-COVID policy is having a demonstrable impact on consumer-facing industries. Access GlobalData’s new whitepaper, China in 2022: the impact of China’s Zero-COVID lockdowns on economic activity, consumer goods and the foodservice industry, to examine the current situation in Shanghai and other cities in China, to better understand the worst-affected industry sectors, foodservice in particular, and to explore potential growth opportunities as China recovers. The white paper covers:
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According to GlobalData’s latest COVID-19 recovery tracker, published December 7th 2020, over *1one third of the global population strongly or somewhat agrees that they are ordering their groceries more often from meal delivery services than before the pandemic. The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated food delivery platforms’ growth, propelled by the significant boost digital services overall have seen this year. In fact, many such platforms have branched into retail on top of foodservice, by offering consumers quick and easy door-step grocery deliveries.

As cocooning trends took precedence this year, supermarket’s conventional online services struggled to cope with the considerable uptick in demand – creating a new space and opportunity for agile digital platforms to cater to consumer demand for rapid, direct grocery deliveries. GlobalData has covered this topic in great detail, noting recent partnerships such as the Aldi-Deliveroo venture as a key strategy to diversify portfolios and capitalize on consumers’ increased reliance on digital channels. The biggest driver of these innovations, it can be argued, is convenience, as consumers expect tailored, accessible and smooth service transactions that fit around their lifestyles and needs.

This is most notably driven by younger generations and suggests a promising landscape for apps such as HungryPanda. As per the same survey, nearly half of millennials worldwide expect to continue to use such delivery services for their regular grocery shops more often. Millennials are often characterized by their tech-savvy aptitude and wide adoption of smartphone usage; this suggests a promising future outlook, as the iGen, otherwise referred to as Digital Natives, are likely to see even higher acceptance of such apps, bringing them into mainstream usage.

However, capacity for traditionally meal-focused delivery services tends to be limited as the drivers often rely on their own modes of transport, such as bicycles or regular cars, rather than supermarket-funded vans that can support a monthly shop. In order to fully realize the grocery delivery sector’s value, a different approach may be needed; HungryPanda’s tailored strategy to specific cuisine types and demographic groups may just provide the answer. By narrowing its focus, the platform is able to streamline its operations and personalize its services. What’s more, as it is targeted at overseas Chinese communities, a large portion of which are students residing in dormitories, the orders are often done in bulk or “family-style” baskets, making the logistics and deliveries simpler.

The platforms international presence and partnership with native Chinese apps, such as WePay, serves to highlight the importance of collaboration and user-friendly interfaces. It is accessible, in summary, and this has bolstered its growth in just four short years to expand to numerous cities in the UK, Italy, France, Australia, New Zealand and the US. Retailers and companies should look at partnering with third-party delivery services such as this in order to capitalize on untapped communities that show ample growth potential.

By focusing on key western markets, where traditional Asian supermarkets may be limited or only located in urban areas, HungryPanda is uniquely positioned during the lockdown periods to offer convenient and safe access to grocery staples for many Asian households. And as consumers continue to use the app, ease and accessibility can quickly translate to habit, creating a new and loyal consumer base. What’s more, with approximately 50 million Chinese speakers outside of China, the majority of which are located in Southeast Asian countries, there is ample opportunity for growth and further expansion.

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What’s missing from your IPO industry assessment?

IPO activity all but stopped in 2020, as the investment community grew wary of the effects of COVID-19 on economies. No matter how deserving a business was of flotation, momentum was halted by concerns of when a ‘new normal’ of working patterns and trade would set in. Recently, sentiment has changed. Flotations picked up again during the second half of 2021, and now in 2022 the mood is decidedly optimistic. Business leaders have their eyes on fast rebounding economies, buoyant market indices and the opportunity once again to take their businesses public. As a result, global IPOs are expected to hit back this year. With GlobalData’s new whitepaper, ‘IPOs in Consumer and Retail: 5 must-include elements for your prospectus industry report’, you can explore exactly what is needed in the essential literature. GlobalData’s focus lies in the critical areas to get right:
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  • Consumer context
  • Industry environment
  • Competitive environment
  • Route to market
Interested to learn more about what to include in your IPO Industry Assessment report? Download our free whitepaper.
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