Virtual Food Halls or Digital Food Halls are a hybrid of a food hall and delivery kitchen that looks to empower Food & Beverage (F&B) and restaurant brands to thrive in the increasingly virtual and digital marketplace.
Image: The collaboration between Village Food Courts and ZING will reverberate across the Indian market and propel VFC to newer heights.
Village Food Courts Pvt. Ltd. (VFC) and Singapore-based Zing Ventures Pte. Ltd. (ZING) announced a USD $4.00 Million joint venture to establish Virtual Food Halls (VFHs) in India, one of the largest markets in Asia.
Virtual Food Halls or Digital Food Halls are a hybrid of a food hall and delivery kitchen that looks to empower Food & Beverage (F&B) and restaurant brands to thrive in the increasingly virtual and digital marketplace. They offer both a physical and virtual marketplace for F&B brands combined with multi-brand delivery kitchens and catering solutions allowing F&B brands to leverage on both the increasing demand for delivery whilst still offering multi-brand dine-in experiences for customers.
VFC is an established food court operations company that is a leading F&B platform in India offering multiple branded food formats within shopping centres and on major highways. VFC has entered into multiple agreements with shopping mall developers to establish food courts and other entertainment venues led by associate companies under Village Groupe.
ZING operates a “Kitchen as a Service” (“KaaS”) platform that allows third party F&B brands to seamlessly participate in their Digital Food Halls. Presently, it operates in multiple locations in Malaysia, which equates to hundreds of virtual restaurants in its system. ZING has set its sights to be the market leader in Southeast Asia with immediate plans to penetrate the Singaporean and Indonesian markets over the next two years.
Suraj Arora, Managing Partner, VFC, says “To create an immediate impact, we plan to launch at marquee shopping malls in Bengaluru, Chennai, New Delhi – NCR, Mumbai, and Pune, followed by neighbourhood centres in these cities. These cities are major hubs for innovation and the ideal markets for testing market acceptance and together with ZING, we look forward to building the largest hybrid platform for scaling F&B brands.”
Ehon Chew, CFO, ZING, says “We will begin by bringing the existing Partnering Brands from our Malaysian portfolio, such as Tail & Fin Poke, Canning Heritage Halal Dim Sum, Wings of the World, Mikey’s Original New York Pizza, NY Burger Co., Ginger Thai Express, House of Malaya, Mr. Fish Seafood Noodle and Royal Wings, amongst others, to India. In the future, once we have onboarded local brands from India, we could then bring those brands from India to the Southeast Asian markets. This is what we refer to as our ‘cross pollination’ strategy; not only a great way for consumers to experience authentic food from all over the world, but it is also a great way for our Brand Partners to grow internationally!”
The collaboration between these two groups will reverberate across the Indian market and propel VFC to newer heights. Both groups complement each other perfectly as VFC has access to multiple locations, and ZING has a robust and immensely scalable business model. The idea of a hybrid virtual or digital food hall offering multiple international brands at every VFC location, surely will augur well for the growing and ever savvier consumer market, allowing not only an unforgettable culinary experience but also experiencing the digital journey offered by ZING. Consumers will be spoilt for choice with such a wide ensemble of brands.
Zing Ventures Pte Ltd, based out of Singapore but with most of its operations currently located in Malaysia, is a food and technology company that has its primary focus in the fast-growing food delivery market. ZING is building an enclosed ecosystem that integrates Service 4.0 technologies, leading the transformation of the Food and Beverage (F&B) industry. ZING, through its pioneering Digital Foodhalls, provides F&B brand owners a multi-channel and multi-location operation platform that enables them to grow their business, regionally and internationally, free of capex and operational challenges.
About Village Food Courts (VFC)
VFC is a co-fooding platform offering multiple branded food options within local shopping centres and also on major highways. It operates a growth accelerator for F&B brands, offering unmatched scaling opportunity (targeting 200+ locations in 5 years across local Shopping Malls and Major Highways).