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Part of a ZDNet Special Feature: Coronavirus: Business and technology in a pandemic

Deliveroo to offer temporary fee relief for venues using its food delivery service

No commission fee for pick-up orders.

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Image: Deliveroo

Food delivery service Deliveroo has announced that it will remove the commission fee for pick-up orders and drop its commission rate to 5% where restaurants provide their own delivery.

The commission relief will apply until June 5.

Deliveroo Australia CEO Ed McManus said the temporary relief signals the company's support for local businesses who have been impacted by novel coronavirus outbreak.

"At Deliveroo we are only as good as our restaurant partners; their success is our success," he said.

"We continue to look for ways to support our restaurant partners and following discussions with them we know this short-term relief on commissions we are announcing today for restaurant partners across Australia will assist them to continue to trade and to keep their teams employed." 

The decision comes weeks after the Queensland government announced it was holding meetings with "key stakeholders" to address the delivery fees that food delivery services such as Deliveroo and Uber Eats are charging local cafe and restaurants.

"Deliveroo already offers one of the more completive commission rates and it's great news for business owners as well as consumers," Queensland Minister for Small Business Shannon Fentiman said of Deliveroo's latest announcement.

"These new measures provide options for the consumer to make informed decisions so they can still support their eatery when they order through Deliveroo."

McManus added how the company's work with the Queensland government would on an ongoing basis. 

"Deliveroo came to the decision internally to temporarily reduce commissions, which follows on from a number of initiatives the delivery business has already introduced such as same-day payments, contactless delivery, and promotional support, all which have already made a difference," he said. 

"Our conversations with the Queensland government have been very constructive and we will continue to work with the Minister on ways we can continue to support the restaurant sector."

It also follows in the steps of Uber Eats, which had announced in mid-March that there would be 0% service fees on pick-up until June 30. This has since been extended to July 31. 

The initiative was part of the company's restaurant support package, which also includes offering a 50% reduction on the activation fees for restaurants wanting to join the platform until May 15.

"We understand that this is an incredibly difficult time for the restaurant industry and particularly small business owners. Our goal at this time is to support restaurants to stay open for business for as long as they can and to continue to capture the demand from customers through pick up and delivery," an Uber Eats spokesperson told ZDNet.

"The restaurant support package we announced in March was carefully considered so that it can simultaneously help our existing partners create offers for customers, and support new restaurants to easily and quickly get onto our platform.

"Given the uncertainty and potentially lengthy nature of the current situation, our support package is focused on measures that are sustainable for us as a business, and also help restaurant partners to continue to attract customers and increase order volumes."

As a result of mandated closures introduced by the federal government to minimise the spread of the novel coronavirus outbreak, many cafes and restaurants have had to operate solely on takeaway and delivery orders.

Updated 5 May 2020, 5:10pm (AEST): Additional comments from Deliveroo and Uber were added.

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