Taiwan embraces cutthroat food delivery market

Two businesses decide to pull out of market this year

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Foodpanda Facebook image

Foodpanda Facebook image

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Taiwan is seeing cutthroat competition in the online food delivery market, and two such platforms have decided to pull out this year.

Local company Food To All (吃飽沒) and Singapore’s Honestbee have announced plans to cease services in Taiwan in 2019, reported the China Times. The reason for their withdrawal from the island is fierce competition from rivals like Uber Eats, Foodpanda, and Deliveroo, said the Central News Agency (CNA).

According to the Directorate General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics, in 2018 a household spent an average NT$99,978 (US$3,159) on restaurants and hotels. Ordering pizzas, handmade drinks, and bento boxes has become a major part of the culinary culture in Taiwan, wrote CNA.

It is little wonder that the island has seen sprouting food delivery services over the years considering the increasing number of people living alone and the dwindling size of households due to the low birth rate. According to a survey by the Market Intelligence & Consulting Institute (MIC), 90 percent of respondents say they eat out for at least one meal each day.

Capital, scale of economy, and brand recognition are the three elements to the survival of a food delivery service provider, reckoned Chang Hsiao-chi (張筱祺), a senior MIC analyst of the Market Intelligence & Consulting Institute (MIC).

Local or small businesses are bound to fall by the wayside faced with international brands that possess enormous capital and resources to invest in advertising. Well-managed logistics, research and development advancement, and sound personnel training are also key to standing out in the world of food delivery, said the report.

Despite the loss of two service providers, industry observers estimate that food delivery in Taiwan is expected to grow by 30 percent. The market currently stands at NT$2.7 billion.