Virus Crisis Threatens 90% of Moscow’s 15,000 Restaurants: Industry Group

As many as 90% of the restaurants, cafes, and bars in Moscow might not survive the ongoing city-wide lockdown forced onto the Russian capital by the coronavirus pandemic, an industry representative has warned, according to Vedomosti.

The Federation of Restaurateurs and Hoteliers (FRIO) said the industry is facing a “great depression,” with revenue now down 90%, and the growth in-home delivery services not enough to make up for the shortfall, the business daily wrote. 

Almost 15,000 food and drink venues have been closed in Moscow as a result of the lockdown which came into force Monday, and the group fears most of the capital’s eating establishments might not reopen their doors once the quarantine is lifted.

Russia’s two leading food delivery services, Yandex Eats and Delivery Club have both reported strong growth in orders. Yandex Eats says it is connecting 200 new restaurants to its service a day — six times the usual level — while customer orders are running at levels usually only seen in Russia’s week-long national holidays in May and over the New Year.

However, while the fast-food industry has been weathering the storm, the paper reported, the slowdown in business is particularly acute at higher-end sections of the market not well-suited to food delivery.

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