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  • Manika Gupta

Cloud Kitchens in Delhi/NCR face many challenges in their delivery model

Updated: Mar 16

Cloud kitchens are proving to be a perfect alternative to regular restaurants




One of the big applications of cloud technology is cloud kitchens.  As opposed to the conventional ways of running a restaurant or food-based industry which requires setting up a large number of infrastructure, cloud kitchen is a perfect alternative for conventional restaurants.


What is a cloud kitchen?

Cloud kitchens are virtual restaurants that deliver food online and deliver through food aggregators like Uber Eats, Zomato, etc., mostly, but some operate though the social media—Instagram and WhatsApp




Cloud kitchens are virtual restaurants that deliver food online and deliver through food aggregators like Uber Eats, Zomato, etc., mostly, but some operate though the social media—Instagram and WhatsApp.


 Cloud kitchens are proving to be a profitable business model as they need less amounts spent on  infrastructure. Accordingly, they need low investment compared to any dine-in. Low setup costs, and a complete automation facility have helped cloud kitchens to gain huge popularity in the entrepreneurship space. The cloud kitchens could be big or small or could be niche or catering to the masses.


For instance, a cloud Kitchen called Project Sweet Dish (PSD) in Gurgaon  specialises in French breads like sourdough and desserts like Entremet. They cater to B2B and B2C customers.  While the B2B customers are through the word of the mouth, the B2C customers come mostly through the social media- Instagram and WhatsApp. 


Right now, this cloud Kitchen caters to big names in Delhi NCR like Salad Days and big cafes who take their specialised breads and pastries.  Miam, also based out of Delhi/ NCR is another one of this kind.  However, Kaleido Asian Kitchen owned by Chef Vidushi Sharma dishes Asian food carefully picked up from across Asia like Tom Kha soup to flourless chocolate cake, it covers a lot of Asian dishes that are favourites of food lover

 

Working in a cloud kitchen

Cloud kitchens are usually well automated with some chefs working in them. For instance, PSD has a team of 12-15 chefs, some kitchen help and a kitchen service team.

Customers use online platforms like iOS or Android mobile applications for placing their orders. And the food is delivered through the food aggregators like Swiggy and Zomato.


Types of cloud kitchens

There are various types of cloud kitchens based on the type, size and characteristics. These can be classified as  :

Uni-brand cloud kitchen, Multi- brand cloud kitchen, Restaurant combined with cloud kitchen, co-working cloud kitchen and aggregator cloud kitchen. While PSD is a uni-brand cloud kitchen and it’s not a chain, there are many like Bowl Soul operating from Gurgaon that are multi-brand.


Challenges that cloud kitchens face

According to a spokesperson of PSD cloud kitchen, the biggest challenge that a cloud kitchen faces is customer acquisition and customer retention. For that the quality has to be very high.  Dependence on Zomato and Swiggy can be expensive for low-cost cloud kitchens. Zomato and Swiggy charge a huge commission.


A lot of owners/ chefs are very vocal about the high cut that these aggregators or platforms are charging and this make the kitchens work on a very small profit margin. Though, the cloud kitchens are profitable, and there are a lot of expenses that they can avoid—co-working cloud kitchens type have better profitability and there are many co-working cloud kitchens coming up in Gurgaon.


Mobile App for cloud kitchen

If the cloud kitchen develops its own mobile application, it is helpful for the cloud kitchens to operate in a different space. The app helps them in collecting online orders and some can even help them in collecting analytics of their customers and thereby convert them to potential clients by providing regular offers and discounts.

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