Roadrunnr’s TinyOwl Acquisition Complete; New Runnr App Launched

Roadrunnr acquisition of TinyOwl acquisition is officially complete, and a new entity – Runnr – has come into existence. At around 9 am today morning, the TinyOwl app changed into a brand new avataar.

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TinyOwl had a protracted period of strife last year during which it had fired over 200 employees and had seen its founder being held hostage for over 36 hours by irate employees. TinyOwl had also fallen behind on the food ordering game with Swiggy and Zomato making large strides and starting operations in several new cities. TinyOwl, on the other hand, had shrunk its operations last month, and was only operating in Mumbai.

But following its acquisition by Roadrunnr, the combined entity hopes that the synergies between Roadrunnr’s logistics expertise and TinyOwl’s food delivery experience will help it get a leg-up over the competition. “We’ve recently acquired the food delivery app TinyOwl and are pumping its service with our technology and logistics”, says Runnr’s blog. “With a fleet of over 5000 Runnrs across 10 Indian cities, several teams dedicated to constantly bringing in upgrades in technology, we’ve mastered the product delivery game over the year.” it says.

We gave the app, which currently delivers only in selected areas of Mumbai, a spin. Runnr has a full stack solution with its own delivery boys, which it says will help it deliver better customer experience than its competitors. The app has a modern and clean interface, and like with other delivery apps, is image-heavy with lot of pretty pictures of food. It runs smoothly though, and ordering food seemed pretty straightforward. Food apps seem to have gotten really good at making food ordering easy, and Runnr seems to continue the trend. With a few taps our order was placed, and delivered within the stipulated time. Like Zomato, Runnr also offers a live chat with its support team.

The app seems solid, but Runnr needs to be careful of not falling into the traps that other food delivery apps did. The food delivery model can’t run on discounts alone, and players will need to differentiate on services and branding, and most importantly, focus on unit economics. Runnr charged a delivery fee of Rs. 30 for the order, and there didn’t seem to be any promo codes available. If it can keep its economics in place, Runnr can once again hope to be a major player in the food delivery space.