Viewing entries in
Entrepreneurship

The Battle of the Food Delivery Service

The Battle of the Food Delivery Service

Nothing beats a home-cooked meal. But when you're living in a university dorm away from mummy's cooking, coming back after a long day of lectures and CCAs, the last thing you really want to do is to cook instant noodles and feel sad for yourself.  

But thanks to the wonders of technology, and the proliferation of food delivery services in Singapore nowadays, there's no lack of food options just a few button taps away to be delivered right to your doorstep. 

With Deliveroo, Foodpanda, and newcomer UberEATS, which of these serve up the best meals at the best prices and with the best service? We take a look.

Foodpanda

Foodpanda was launched in 2012, making this the "pioneer" and longest-running among the three major players. Proving just how much Singaporeans were longing for more than just MacDonald's and Domino's home deliveries, Foodpanda reportedly saw a 400% increase in revenue from 2015-2016 for their independent food delivery service.

With a wide selection of food choices, not just fast food, but affordable Japanese restaurants and Indonesian cuisine, Foodpanda was offering Singaporeans accessible meals that's delivered right to their tables. As of today, Foodpanda has a whopping 450+ restaurant partners under their fold.

Average delivery time: Within 30 minutes

Average delivery fee: $3-$12

Deliveroo

Even though their riders are infamous for ignoring road safety rules, since launching in 2015, Deliveroo has been on a growing spree and expanding its operations dramatically. In just four months, their fleet of delivery riders ballooned from 5 to 550. 

Deliveroo’s roster of restaurant partners are carefully curated - from burger chains to top Italian trattoria, their market segment are more expatriates and working professionals. They do not offer “low-quality takeaway restaurants” (as claimed on their website).

Part of their skyrocketing growth can be attributed to their willingness to partner with other expanding startups like Grab to widen their reach in the shortest possible time in the easily saturated Singapore market. 

Average delivery time: Within 32 minutes

Average delivery fee: Flat fee of $3 each order

UberEATS

A relative newcomer with a big name attached to it - UberEATS harnesses the wide reach of its Uber drivers to fulfil delivery orders. This is on top of their additional fleet of dedicated delivery motorcycles. Launched in May last year, they have close to 110 restaurants partnering with them, most of which are at the more expensive end of the market. 

From Michelin-starred restaurants, to gin gardens, to ramen joints, the UberEATS model seem to be clinching the higher end eateries, before focusing on the more accessible fare in time, so as to avoid competition with the other two players.

This is the service to look for if you are planning a special date night in, or pretending to "cook" a birthday brunch. Top quality food delivered right to your doorstep. 

Average delivery time: Within 35 minutes

Average delivery fee: Flat fee of $3 with no minimum order 

 

4 fun things to do when your friends come visit this Chinese New Year

4 fun things to do when your friends come visit this Chinese New Year

There's nothing greater than heading over to your buddy's house to "bai nian", spend some quality time with friends, and receive an ang bao on top of having fun.

Most Singaporeans will go to a karaoke lounge or darts bar to amuse themselves, but how about turning your home into a space to do those exact same things so you don't have to spend your ang bao money that soon.

Here are 4 fun (and free!) things to do with friends this Chinese New Year:

Sing KTV

Have you ever asked yourself, in the middle of a karaoke session with drunken friends, why you were actually paying $30 to listen to the world’s worst singer for 2 hours? Now, your life would have been so much better if your friends had been singing back at your place. Not only would you not have had to pay to listen to awful singing, your neighbours would also have promptly put a stop to the tone-deaf warbler.

Easily recreate the KTV experience at home. And no, you don’t even have to spend a few hundred bucks on one of those overpriced karaoke machines loaded with Jay Chou songs.

First, get two wireless microphones, which can be bought on Qoo10 for less than $20. Then, find the karaoke version of virtually every song that exists in an actual karaoke lounge on YouTube (The karaoke version is the video whereby the singer’s voice has been cut out and lyrics flash across the screen).

Coupled with an internet connection and a laptop, you have your very own personal karaoke system! (angry neighbour not included) 

Throw Darts

I personally think dart bars are one of the dodgiest places with the garish neon lights and rows of blinking dart machines. But they are actually one of the popular past times of Singaporeans who consider the game a challenge. Of course, most others would see it as just another way to keep you occupied when there’s an awkward lull in the conversation.

Why pay when you can buy your own dart board for less than $40? Get a basic set on Qoo10, or if you’re a more serious player you might want to invest in a better board from a merchant like this one. Buy a few bottles of beer from the supermarket, and you and your buddies are all set for the night.

Watch Movies

The average Singaporean visits the cinema 4.2 times a year, which is remarkably high by global standards. Most don't realise that all this sinking into cool, springy seats in the air-conditioned darkness of a cinema adds up to a lot of money spent. 

Watching a movie on Chinese New Year for example, can cost on average $12. Even higher if it's a blockbuster that's newly released that week. 

If you're not in a rush to catch the latest movie once it's out, get a VGA cable on Qoo10 for less than $15 to connect your laptop to a bigger screen like a tv or another computer screen. If you or your friends have a Netflix account, you can stream the latest movies for free. Even if none of you have an account, you can sign up free for a month, but don't forget to cancel the account before it starts charging. 

Buy some chips or microwavable popcorn from the supermarket, and enjoy the show.

Play Mahjong

The quintessential sound of Chinese New Year is either "gong xi gong xi gong xi niiiii~" blaring through the shopping malls' speakers, or the shuffling sound of mahjong tiles.

In mahjong, there is some skill and memory work involved. (It has been scientifically proven that mahjong prevents dementia) And for some reason, the Chinese like to put their hard-earned money in the hands of fate when playing mahjong, to try and reap more than what they have put in. 

Because we live in an amazing world, if you don't have mahjong tiles or table, you can now rent one for $20 from here. Mahjong tiles can also be bought for as low as $2 at Cash Converters. But based on personal experience, I have knocked on neighbours' doors to ask to borrow a mahjong table before and been successful. Nothing beats the spirit of community during the Lunar New Year. 

Grit

Grit

In the TED talk video, Angela Lee Duckworth digs deeper into what is the key to success. Many would have guessed that it is talent, ability or IQ that enables one to achieve success in a school or even work setting. In her research work as a psychologist, Duckworth is surprised to find out that it is the passion and perseverance of having a long term goal, or what she terms as, grit. However, when asked by parents and teachers how one can instill grit into their children, Duckworth expresses uncertainty due to the lack of in-depth research into this topic. Nevertheless, she elaborates an idea developed at Stanford University of “growth mindset”. Such a mindset is one that an individual has when he believes his level of success is dependent on the amount of effort he puts in. This results in a higher level of achievement and a greater sense of free will. The growth mindset is in opposition to a fixed one where the learning of an individual is constrained by his belief of the attributes he already has to be successful. Such a fixed mindset will only result in the individual’s learning plateauing earlier and therefore, reaching less than his full potential. 

Past Cases

Thomas Edison, the inventor of some of the most world-changing devices like the electrical lamp and the movie camera, was once told as a child by his teachers that he was “too stupid to learn anything”. Today, most childhoods would not be the same without Walt Disney, who was once fired by a newspaper editor as he had “lacked imagination and have no good ideas”. Even the late modern day entrepreneur, Steve Jobs got booted from the very own company he started! These well-known persons have strived and through sheer grit, have made a name for themselves in their industry and in history. Had they pursued a fixed mindset or have given up halfway, the devices and entertainment we have come to know and love would not have been possible.

How can it apply to you?

The view that you adopt for yourself profoundly affects your life. Sure, you may not be the next Thomas Edison or Walt Disney. But as a student or working adult, a small change in your mindset can allow you to fully realize your potential.  The change from that of hunger for approval to that of having a passion for learning will make you believe that things like human qualities and even relationships can be cultivated through effort and practice.

As a parent, you can cultivate a growth mindset in your children in the early stages of their lives by promoting competition with themselves instead of others. Aim to have effort-praised children instead of ability-praised ones. This will not only drive their self-motivation but also help to instill the mindset that they will adopt when met with failures or rejections at any point in their lives. 

Entrepreneurs are artists

Entrepreneurs are artists

How many of you are founders? How many of you were engineers? Let me tell you that you are no longer engineers. When you are a founder you are an artist. You see things others don’t.
— Steve Blank