Deliveroo sets up its own pizza parlour

The Amazon-backed company says it wants to understand the pain felt in restaurants

A Deliveroo pizza restaurant will open in London. EPA

Deliveroo is opening a bricks-and-mortar restaurant in London as part of an experiment to see whether its food delivery savvy can be extended to solve other hospitality problems.

Amazon-backed Deliveroo, which has become a worldwide name in moving dishes from restaurants to at-home diners, says it wants to understand the pain felt in restaurants.

It is setting up Pizza Paradiso in north London, but insists there are no plans to expand the venture.

“We want to understand restaurants’ pain points with the aim of solving them, and to do this by having a deep understanding of restaurant owners’ mindset,” a Deliveroo representative said.

Pizza Paradiso will have indoor and outdoor seating, a front-of-house pizza oven and a kitchen in the back.

There is no opening date but a licensing application is with the local Camden Council.

Deliveroo staff will be able to learn how to manage the restaurant in Swiss Cottage.

Restaurants have been hit by successive blows during the pandemic and the advance of at-home dining has offered some respite.

But there are well-known drawbacks to the delivery experience, including drivers queued at pickup points and the stresses of running two order streams, for in-house customers and online orders.

Deliveroo says it wants to work out how to balance the needs of both sets of diners.

For now, the company says there are no plans to expand the idea.

Trish Caddy, a food-service analyst at market-research company Mintel, said Pizza Paradiso could become a blueprint for other endeavours.

And Deliveroo does have some previous experience operating a food service venture.

Deliveroo Editions are “dark kitchen” locations where multiple restaurant brands operate kitchens for delivery in one space.

It has nearly 300 such kitchens, including in the UK, UAE and Hong Kong.

Deliveroo reported a pre-tax loss of £104.8 million ($141m) for the first half of 2021, compared with a loss of £128.4 million a year earlier. Shares in the company fell on their first day of trading in March.

But transactions processed on its platform during the third quarter of 2021 rose to £1.59 billion from £1.04 billion in the same quarter a year earlier.

Updated: January 10th 2022, 6:57 PM