The three co-founders of online food ordering platform Oddle, Jonathan Lim, Pua Yong Xiang and Alan Goh, do not mince words even when talking about competitors in their industry.
One of the first things they address is the perception that food delivery operators such as GrabFood and Deliveroo are charging inflated commission fees, as high as 30 per cent of an order. “The commission is only expensive when the value of the basket is high,” says Lim, who is the platform’s chief executive officer. “If someone delivers an order of $20, a $6 delivery fee is actually very cheap. From a cost perspective, no one can do a delivery at that price.” A fair delivery fee, he says, would range between $8 and $10.
Quibbling over the cost of a food delivery may seem inconsequential but over the past few months, this has become one of the largest flashpoints for Singapore’s embattled F&B industry. Due to the closure of dine-in services during Singapore’s circuit breaker period, many have pivoted to offering takeaway and food deliveries to survive.
What Oddle is doing differently as compared to other common delivery services is that it charges a flat 10 per cent commission of online sales. “The logistics of deliveries are left to the owners, so how they manage costs can be decided by them,” explains chief technology officer Pua.
While the platform seems to have sprung up out of nowhere, the company was actually founded in 2014 by the three boyhood friends, following Lim’s futile efforts in shopping for an online system for The Lawn, his cafe located in the Buona Vista area.