GoFood PNG delivers for expanding middle class and youth markets, sets sights on expansion


GoFood PNG started its food delivery service in 2016 with a single car and a website. After explosive growth during the COVID-19 emergency, Chairman Anurag Borkar says it is now preparing to expand services to new markets, including Lae and Mount Hagen.

GoFood PNG Chairman, Anurag Borkar. Credit: BAI/Godfreeman Kaptigau

In its early days, Go Food PNG began delivering meals for just a handful of Port Moresby restaurants, according to Chairman Anurag Borkar.

GoFood’s mobile app was launched in 2021. Credit: GoFood PNG

“The restaurants didn’t realise there was a business model where they get to make additional income,” Borkar told the recent Innovation PNG 2023 conference in Port Moresby. “Instead of people coming to the restaurant, they’re now able to order from their homes, which was absolutely a new concept for them.”

GoFood now has partnerships with more than 40 restaurants in Port Moresby and also provides deliveries for about 10 catering companies and three supermarkets. In 2023, it added a business-to-business delivery service called GoTransport.

Revenue boost

Initially, GoFood’s restaurant partners made an additional K50,000 from deliveries. Total additional revenue for restaurant partners has increased from K400,000 in 2017 to K750,000 in 2022, and Borkar said the figure for 2023 should reach about K1 million.

“There are plenty of opportunities within this business to grow in PNG,” Borkar said. “As internet penetration increases, we feel that businesses like ours will always thrive.”

The food-delivery business is supported by a mobile app that launched in 2021 and is now used by about 20,000 customers, as well as backend operations that provides customer service and fulfils orders.

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“We were compelled to start the app because of COVID,” Borkar said. “COVID was one of the things that really helped our business, because everything was under lockdown and people needed food or groceries to be delivered to their doorsteps.

“It was a sad situation, but we had an opportunity to really take our business to the next level.”

Demographic shift

GoFood PNG’s Operations Manager Vavine Anang accepts the 2023 Innovation PNG Award for small business from chair of judges, Dr Jane Thomason and Business Advantage International’s Andrew Wilkins. Credit: BAI/Godfreeman Kaptigau

Borkar said GoFood’s growth also underscores the rise of Port Moresby’s middle-class, and the willingness of younger Papua New Guineans to embrace new technology. About 68 per cent of its customers are aged between 25 and 45, and 75 per cent are PNG locals.

“We see more and more young Papua New Guineans getting used to our service and ordering from us,” he said.

Borkar said GoFood PNG has recorded compound aggregate growth of 31 per cent over the last 6 years, compared with an estimate of about 18% for similar services globally between 2022 to and 2030, which highlights the potential for further growth, Borkar said.

The company’s ability to execute on its growth plan was recognised late last year when GoFood PNG took out the Small Business title at the 2023 Innovation PNG Awards, with judges praising its ability to adapt common service features to specific PNG market conditions.

What’s next?

GoFood PNG plans to expand operations to Lae early this year and to Mount Hagen around the middle of the year.

“There are plenty of opportunities within this business to grow in PNG,” Borkar said. “As internet penetration increases, we feel that businesses like ours will always thrive.”

Borkar said the business-to-business delivery service will be a key driver for growth in coming years, but GoFood PNG is also considering adding a ride-sharing platform and farm-to-table fresh-food concept.

“What excites us is that we are providing job opportunities for drivers, for delivery crew, for back-office operations, for call centers, and most of our team are young Papua New Guineans, so it gives us an opportunity to train them and create an exciting and energetic culture in the company,” Borkar said.

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