Post graduating as an engineer from Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, Deepinder Goyal started working as a Consultant at Bain & Company, he noticed that a number of his colleagues used to queue up at the pantry to look for menus to order food. This gave him an idea to create an online directory of food menus. Goyal started building a website (called as foodlet.in back then, later changed to foodiebay.com) along with his wife and her younger sister.
His biggest hurdle was his family, they were quite reluctant on him leaving his stable job at Bain & Company and start working full time on his startup. Since all three of them had regular full-time jobs, they pursued this entrepreneurial dream on the side. They used to drive around the city and collect menus from restaurants, scan them and put them online on their website.
The website was made live on 26th January 2008. During its early days, it received traffic of a mere 25 users per day, but what motivated Goyal to continue working on the idea was that some of the users provided positive feedback about the convenience of having scanned menus online. Foodiebay.com was made more engaging for its users by providing in-depth information about restaurants and events (e.g. menu cards, contact details, pictures, directions, rating, and reviews). On 10th July 2008, Goyal partnered with Pankaj Chaddah and continued to build foodiebay.com, later changing the name to zomato.com. Since their initial funding in 2011, they went on to be funded by several investors and achieved the status of a unicorn in 2018. In 2022, Zomato IPO'd at a massive $12 Billion valuation.