Thai food vendors make merry with SCB’s Robinhood, AWS

Purple Ventures, the maker of the alternative food delivery app  “Robinhood” and part of the SCB (Siam Commercial Bank) group, has picked Amazon Web Services as its preferred cloud provider to increase agility, innovation, and efficiency. 

The Robinhood app has leveraged the breadth and depth of AWS’s unmatched portfolio of cloud services, including containers, database, compute, and machine learning, to support thousands of restaurants, drivers, and customers in Bangkok since its launch in October 2020.

The mobile app, built in just three months, is the first in Thailand that does not levy application or gross profit fees on small food vendors, a sector that is struggling financially during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

When a customer places an order for delivery with the Robinhood app, Robinhood pays the vendor the full price of the meal, helping 80,500 food vendors and 13,000 delivery riders across Bangkok earn more.

As part of SCB’s corporate social responsibility initiative, the Robinhood app was developed by Purple Ventures using Amazon Elastic Kubernetes Service (Amazon EKS), which gives companies the flexibility to start, run, and scale Kubernetes container applications in the cloud. 

For example, readily-available merchant, customer, rider, and transaction services were integrated as the container building blocks of Robinhood, which reduced app development time and cost.

Robinhood also uses Amazon Aurora MySQL, a relational database built for the cloud, to process up to 3,000 food orders per minute. Using AWS Batch, Robinhood easily and efficiently runs hundreds of thousands of batch computing jobs in the cloud, which improves customer experience by quickly processing user requests. 

For example, Robinhood can transfer funds between customers, riders, and restaurants in under an hour, process refunds instantly, and recommend vendors who are located closest to the customers to reduce meal delivery times by up to 50%. 

In addition, using Amazon SageMaker, a fully managed service to build, train and deploy machine learning models, Robinhood delivers personalised restaurant recommendations to over 926,000 customers to help them quickly find the food they like.

“By developing Robinhood as a food delivery app that food stall owners can leverage, Purple Ventures is helping food stall vendors, which would normally rely on foot traffic, continue to sell during the pandemic, when customers are ordering meals online rather than walking to food stalls,” said Srihanath Lamsam, managing director of Purple Ventures.

“By not levying application or gross profit fees, Purple Ventures is making it affordable for food stall vendors to list their meal options on the app,” he said.