How COVID-19 has transformed the restaurant landscape in Mexico
The COVID-19 pandemic has had a profound impact on the restaurant industry in Mexico, completely altering the way restaurants operate and forcing them to adapt to new consumer behaviors and demands. Here are some key ways in which the restaurant landscape in Mexico has been transformed due to COVID-19:
The rise of online sales
Prior to the pandemic, online sales and delivery apps accounted for a small portion of a restaurant’s revenue. However, with the onset of COVID-19 and the restrictions on dining-in, online sales suddenly became the primary source of revenue for restaurants. What was once considered an ancillary business unit became the lifeline for many restaurants. This shift in consumer behavior has made restaurants realize the attractiveness and importance of home delivery.
Adapting to delivery
Many restaurants, especially those in the fine dining sector, had never considered delivery as a viable option before the pandemic. However, with the closure of dining rooms, they were forced to rethink their business models and find ways to ensure the same dining experience at home. This meant rethinking how to structure and package their meals for delivery. It also required restaurants to invest in proper packaging materials to maintain the quality of their food during transit.
Rethinking real estate models
The pandemic has also led restaurants to reassess their use of physical space. With the shift towards online sales and delivery, some restaurants are considering reducing their physical footprint and focusing on dark kitchens for delivery operations. This allows them to save on rent and other expenses associated with operating a full-service restaurant. However, it’s important to note that the social aspect of dining out will still remain important, and restaurants will continue to provide spaces for people to gather and enjoy meals together.
Rappi’s expansion plans
Rappi, a popular delivery app in Latin America, has been instrumental in helping restaurants navigate the challenges posed by the pandemic. Rappi operates in multiple cities across Mexico and has been expanding its presence in the country. The company’s focus is on densifying its coverage in the cities where it already operates, rather than expanding to new cities. This means increasing its footprint and ensuring a wide variety of options for users, including different types of stores, cuisines, and price ranges.
Assisting with real estate reassessment
Rappi has been actively involved in assisting restaurants in reassessing their use of existing and new real estate. Prior to the pandemic, Rappi had already developed over 300 dark kitchens, where restaurants could operate without the need for a physical storefront. With the pandemic, more restaurants have embraced the concept of dark kitchens, and Rappi has been facilitating partnerships between restaurants and dark kitchen operators. This allows restaurants to continue operating and fulfilling delivery orders without the need for a traditional dine-in space.
Rappi’s joint venture with Banorte
Rappi recently entered into a joint venture with Banorte, one of the largest banks in Mexico. This joint venture aims to enhance Rappi’s financial services, including Rappi Pay, which provides person-to-person transactions and payment options through QR codes. The partnership with Banorte will allow Rappi to offer additional financial products and services, such as credit cards and insurance, to its users. The collaboration leverages Banorte’s expertise in banking while capitalizing on Rappi’s strong presence and user base in the digital space.
Rappi Entertainment and its impact on streaming platforms
Rappi has recently launched a new vertical called Rappi Entertainment, which aims to become a super-app for everything in Latin America. This vertical includes gaming options, allowing users to play games and win Rappi credits that can be used for purchases on the platform. This move will likely disrupt the landscape for streaming platforms as Rappi aims to offer a comprehensive entertainment experience, incorporating various forms of content and services into its app.
The COVID-19 pandemic has significantly transformed the restaurant landscape in Mexico. Online sales and delivery have become the lifeline for many restaurants, forcing them to adapt and rethink their business models. Rappi, as a delivery app, has played a crucial role in assisting restaurants during this challenging time and has further expanded its services through partnerships and new verticals. While the long-term impact of these changes is yet to be fully realized, it is evident that the restaurant industry in Mexico will continue to evolve and embrace digital solutions to meet the demands of consumers.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: How has COVID-19 affected the restaurant industry in Mexico?
A: COVID-19 has had a profound impact on the restaurant industry in Mexico, with online sales and delivery becoming the primary source of revenue for many restaurants. It has also led to a rethinking of real estate models and a greater emphasis on delivery operations.
Q: How is Rappi assisting restaurants in reassessing their use of real estate?
A: Rappi has been facilitating partnerships between restaurants and dark kitchen operators, allowing them to continue operating and fulfilling delivery orders without the need for a traditional dine-in space.
Q: What is Rappi’s expansion strategy in Mexico?
A: Rappi’s focus is on densifying its coverage in the cities where it already operates, ensuring a wide variety of options for users and improving the overall delivery experience.