DUBAI: A new concept in home delivery service is fast winning over residents in the city.
These companies don’t have any product of their own, but they deliver almost anything to your doorstep — be it a meal from your favourite restaurant, groceries, movie tickets, perfumes… even laundry.
Riding on the success of the new concept is recently launched Genie Delivery Services which promises to pick up anything anywhere in Dubai and deliver it. Manned by three bikes and a car, the company purchases the item from the shop or restaurant of the customer’s choice and delivers it to any desired location in Dubai.
Launched over a month ago with an investment of around Dh300,000, Dubai-based Genie DS is the brainchild of three entrepreneurs — Venky Karuppiah, Rahul Shivaprakash and Bhavesh Daryani, all aged 24. The company currently gets 20 delivery requests a day. “We hope to break even in a year’s time,” said Karuppiah.
Relissa Fernandes, a 31-year-old Indian resident in International City, says she regularly calls Genie DS to pick up her home-made lunch for her cousin in The Gardens, Jebel Ali.
“I don’t drive and I cannot carry food on the Metro. Taking a cab is an expensive option too. It is convenient for me to utilise the delivery service,” said Fernandes.
Jordanian Muhannad Al Shami, 24, a financial consultant living in Downtown Dubai, gets his laundry picked up regularly.
“I don’t drive, so it is convenient for me to use this service. What’s more, I don’t have to worry about settling the bill later as the company pays them upfront. When they bring my clothes, I pay the laundry bill and the delivery charge.”
Genie DS charges Dh45 for every ‘pick and drop’ but not all customers are happy with the pricing.
“We are a group of people who order lunch pick-up and paying Dh45 does not make a difference. However, if someone is asking one item to be picked up in close vicinity, this can be steep,” said Parinaaz Navdar, 26.
Karuppiah said the company was looking to re-work prices. “We sometimes get requests from people to pick up medicines from close to where they live. In such a case we do not want to charge them the same Dh45. We will soon have a calculator to work out rates according to distances covered to pick and drop.”
Working on a slightly different model of the new home delivery concept is Room Services Deliveries (RSD). It only delivers meals from restaurants. With a fleet of bikes and cars at its disposal, it accepts orders for as many as 90 restaurants in Dubai.
“Customers can either make a call or place an online meal order on our website. We take orders for only those restaurants listed with us,” said Ali Farhat, Operations Manager. The delivery charge varies between Dh35 and Dh70, depending on the location.
Another service provider, Foodonclick.com, is an online platform for foodies to scan menus from 700 restaurants and make a direct booking with the outlet at no additional cost.
“We do not directly home-deliver the food. We take requests online and link them to the restaurant,” said Aileen Bautista, senior sales executive. With 17,000 registered users, the site arranges nearly 1,000 meals daily for home delivery.