ESG to partly fund commission costs for F&B players on Deliveroo, foodpanda and GrabFood

Enterprise Singapore (ESG) will partly cover the commission costs for F&B players on Deliveroo, foodpanda and GrabFood. This comes as a move to stop people from dining in restaurants for at least a month forces restaurateurs to make the switch. 

As part of stepped-up measures announced on Friday to curb the spread of Covid-19, only takeaway or delivery orders would be allowed at food establishments for a month starting from April 7, dealing another blow to restaurateurs already suffering from plunging sales

"With the additional measures, sales and profitability of F&B outlets would be impacted due to the drop in dine-in sales and the associated costs of using online food delivery platforms," ESG acknowledged in a statement on Saturday. 

Hence, from 7 April to 4 May, the government agency will fund five percentage points of the commission cost charged by the three delivery platforms. 

For instance, if the current commission to be paid is 25 per cent of the total food delivery transaction value, that cost will be reduced to 20 per cent. This will be reflected directly in the fees charged by the food delivery platforms. 

In addition, there will be no cap on the qualifying food delivery transaction value. ESG' support will cover smaller establishments like hawker stalls and cafes, as well as larger outfits such as food caterers and restaurants.

However, F&B businesses must sell food that was prepared on-premise for immediate consumption. 

F&B businesses that are currently on any of the three food delivery platforms are eligible and won't have to make any applications. Those that are not can approach the food delivery platforms. 

ESG's deputy CEO Ted Tan said that this Food Delivery Booster Package will help manage the business costs of F&B businesses for food delivery orders so that they can stay open for business and adapt their operations accordingly.

At the same time, demand for food delivery is expected to increase significantly - "by as much as two to three times as compared to previous months" - with the implementation of stricter safe distancing measures, he added. 

Hence, "this is also a good time for businesses to optimise their business models for online sales", Mr Tan said, adding that ESG will also be looking at initiatives to help businesses do so. 

GrabFood Singapore said on Saturday that it has refined its merchant onboarding programme and ramped up operations so that more merchants can get started on the platform quickly.

It will also allow new merchants to defer payment of their account activation fee, which starts from S$100, and offset it via food orders.