Open Table about to launch in Australia

Date: 20-01-2015

Can Open Table succeed in Australia?

A recent Google search showed up some interesting information, a Restaurant Relations Manager position in Australia.  Open Table Australia will join Dimmi, Book a Restaurant and our own Free Online Restaurant Booking System.  Their entry into the Australian market comes just 12 months after Restalo entered the Australian market.  Restalo lasted 6 months before decided to take their $10,000,000 war chest and invest it in other markets.

Will Open Table purchase Dimmi?

This comes as a the second punch in a 1 2 punch for Dimmi with the recent news that Urbanspoon has been purchased by Zomato.  Open Table charge is significantly lower fee for bookings made on the Restaurants own website, so the concept of being charged $1 per seat for a booking that comes from the Restaurants will become increasingly less common, as long as Open Table Australia follow that charging policy.  The market is also going to become increasingly crowded.  We believe that there must consolidation, because dominant players need a significant market share to be able to offer a wide range of choice of Restaurants for consumers to choose from.  One of the quickest ways for Open Table to achieve this would be for Open Table to purchase Dimmi.  This of course would mean Dimmi’s customers would need to change from ResDiary, the table management system that Dimmi resells.

What does it mean for Australian Restaurants?

The Open Table offering has much lower fees for bookings made through the Restaurants own website.  This should put pressure on the standard $1 per seat or $3 per seat through the Dimmi network.  It is also great that there is increased competition, as we find that dominant players tend to innovate less when there isn’t much threat of them losing their monopoly.

Of course, if you are looking for a Free Online Restaurant Booking System, check out our FORBS.

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  • Jacob Alexander

    Hi there, been reading your blog for a while and find it really interesting.

    Two questions on this post: was it Dimmi that was purchased by TripAdvisor earlier this year? Do you think TripAdvisor will sell Dimmi to OpenTable?

    Also with your Forbes, which affiliate channels can we get bookings from? Dimmi have stated they have Qantas etc and I understand OpenTable have a few of their own as well

    • Hi Jacob,
      It was Dimmi that was purchased by TripAdvisor. I think it will depend on how they go at making some profit. They have morphed across now to being a large reseller of Resdiary, it will be interesting to see how they go. The use of Resdiary means they are less likely to be a buy for OpenTable I think.

      For FORBS, we don’t have any channels. We recommend to our customers to use Dimmi as well as FORBS, because it gives you access to the Dimmi network, which now really we think is just the Qantas Frequent Flier diners. The feedback from Restaurants is that QFF is where a lot of the Dimmi customers are coming from. Giving Dimmi customer details who are your regular customers through having their widget on your website though can lead to decreasing customer loyalty. Hope this helps.
      James