Meet Manna, the Irish drone delivery startup helping rural areas during pandemic

Coronavirus has not only left many industries disrupted but also paved the way for advancements in select sectors. Like telehealth and autonomous delivery robots, coronavirus has also given drones an opportunity to kick in. And, the Irish drone startup Manna has made used of this pandemic outbreak despite the disruption in its plans.

Founded in 2018 by Bobby Healy, Manna was all set to kick start its drone delivery service around a Dublin university campus back in March but the pandemic outbreak and the subsequent lockdown disrupted its pilot programme. However, the drone startup reshuffled its operations and started delivering medication and urgent supplies to the senior citizens in rural areas.

Manna adapted to changes!

Initially, Manna was all set to deliver Ben and Jerry’s ice cream to students in Dublin. The startup struck a deal with Unilever and Just Eat to deliver the same to 30,000 students of Dublin University from March 18. As it neared the fixed date, the pandemic outbreak made changes to the company’s plans. The founder and CEO, Bobby Healy realised that people isolated in rural areas will be in need of medicines and groceries among other essential supplies. And, decided to use Manna’s drones to deliver these supplies.

What’s interesting to know about this Irish drone delivery startup is that they didn’t wait for things to calm down and the Irish government to ease restrictions. Instead, they used the food delivery drones to delivery medication and other essential supplies. During the coronavirus outbreak, the drone delivery startup ensures to follow safety measures and social distancing norms. Drones execute deliveries with zero human contact that isn’t the case with normal ways of delivery.

First pilot programme!

Manna chose Moneygall for its first trial that has been running for six weeks. One of its drones has been deployed to handle between 20 and 50 deliveries a day. The drone can carry between 4.5 pounds and 9 pounds of supplies. After witnessing success, Manna proceeded with the delivery of products besides essentials such as medicines, butter, and bread. The startup had delivered Fanta, a birthday cake, and puncture repair kits as well in the village. They even delivered a pizza to a parish priest (85).

Back in late 2019, Manna secured nearly €2.7 million funding from Dynamo VC, a logistics-focused fund. The drone delivery startup channelled the funding for its commercial growth that will deploy a fleet of drones to deliver food directly from restaurants to consumers.

Plans to expand further

Following the successful pilot programme in the village, Manna is in plans to expand its drone delivery service to a relatively larger town. However, they are yet to finalise the town. The company doesn’t want to break into large cities with dense populations as there are roadblocks such as limited outdoor space that challenge drone deliveries. Tapping into rural communities, Manna Aera intends to become popular without facing competition from food delivery giants such as Deliveroo and Uber Eats.

Main image picture credits: Manna

Stay tuned to Silicon Canals for more European technology news.

The post Meet Manna, the Irish drone delivery startup helping rural areas during pandemic appeared first on Silicon Canals .

Startups – Silicon Canals

Need Ideas/Feedback – Hyper Local Delivery Grocery Store

I operate a Daily Essentials/ Grocery retail store (in SriLanka) for about a year now and during this lockdown period I took the service online (accepting orders using WhatsApp) and managed to do around 50,000 deliveries in two months. We have the logistics and warehousing established and we marketed it as a same day delivery service.

Now I’m in the process of building an e-commerce store to continue this stream of service even after the lockdown.

Do you think people will still be interested in ordering groceries online after the lockdown period when the bigger supermarkets start to operate. What are some of the features that we can provide to keep the customers coming back and continuing to use this service?

Looking for ideas to keep customers coming back to us after the lockdown period.

Feature Set I have thought of;

• Like providing loyalty points?

• Team up with restaurants to provide a % off their bill at the restaurants

• Pay utilities bills through our store

• Pharmacy

• Convert their loyalty points to phone credit (sorted and ready to roll)

• Sell a monthly subscription bundle of essentials products? (Household, Body care) (Snack Box- chips, chocolates) (Cooking ingredients/essentials- Oils, fats, spices)

• Free In-store pick-up

Would really appreciate your input.

P.S – Delivery service has been outsourced to another company at a flat rate of $ 1 per delivery which is charged from the customer.

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Startups – Rapid Growth and Innovation is in Our Very Nature!

These autonomous delivery robots of Europe are all set for post-COVID era

As the COVID-19 pandemic grips the world, there are countless industries that have been impacted. One major threat that has been overlooked by many is the impact on humans. We say so as robots are all set to replace humans in many jobs, better or worse is yet to be known. Analysts foresee that COVID-19 could change customer preference and open up new opportunities for automation.

Machines took the place of human jobs during the lockdown, thereby accelerating automation across sectors. Eventually, many companies have switched towards automation to manage their supply chains and meet customer demands. This is essential when there is a necessity for social distancing that makes human intervention tedious in many tasks.

We have already come across some startups in the robotics industry that are gaining traction during the pandemic. The delivery robots are rising in popularity but it looks like there is going to be no end to it any time soon. As businesses are mapping out long-term and immediate strategies, the robotics industry will continue to serve industries and communities even post the COVID-19 crisis. Moreover, there was a rise in the adoption of automation and robotics solutions even before the pandemic outbreak and it is gaining further traction now due to the current situation.

Having detailed the same, here we have listed some startups specialised in the autonomous delivery robots based in Europe. Do give it a read as these could help you understand the role of robotics solutions post the pandemic crisis.

Picture credits: Balyo

Balyo (France)

Founder/s: Fabien Bardinet
Founded year: 2005
Funding: €10 million

Balyo designs, develops, and markets innovative handling robots. The company’s navigation technology lets it transform standard forklift trucks into standalone intelligent robots that can work alongside humans. With Balyo, fleets of robots navigate through warehouses or factories without any additional infrastructure. As opposed to traditional automated trucks that are expensive and inflexible, Balyo does not require lines or reflectors on the floor to guide its fleet of robots relies on geoguidance on the existing structural environment, columns, walls and racks.

Picture credits: Eliport

Eliport (Spain)

Founder/s: Dmitry Skorinko, Patrick Synge
Founded year: 2017
Funding: €110k

Eliport solves last-mile logistics problems by providing robotics solutions with its fleet of ground-based delivery machines. These delivery robots are autonomous and travel on pavements and in pedestrian zones at walking speeds. Eliport robots are different from other autonomous robots as these can be loaded and unloaded sans human interaction. And, it lets businesses accomplish their objective of offering a cost-effective and reliable delivery service for urban and suburban areas. Also, it solves convenience-based delivery issues for customers.

Picture credit: Starship Technologies

Starship Technologies (Estonia)

Founder/s: Ahti Heinla, Janus Friis
Founded year: 2014
Funding: €74.7 million

Starship Technologies is building a network of robots ready to serve you anytime and anywhere. The startup believes that its robots will revolutionise food and package deliveries, offering people convenient services that improve everyday life. Its fleet of self-driving delivery robots are designed to deliver goods locally within 30 minutes. Starship Technologies’ robots are equipped with a sensor suite that includes cameras, GPS and inertial measurement unit. In March, Starship Technologies started operating delivery robots in Milton Keynes in the UK. The launch of the service offers conventional delivery services during the stressful period.

Picture credits: Teleretail

TeleRetail (Switzerland)

Founder/s: Torsten Scholl, Xenia Scholl
Founded year: 2014
Funding: €950k

TeleRetail is an autopilot software for self-driving transport vehicles. AITO-operated self-driving transport systems automate logistics processes. AITO-operated vehicles intelligently combine with traditional means of transport. Leveraging the specific advantages of each mode of transport to facilitate the use of robotics technology in cities, rural areas and in industrial environments. With the Pulse 1 robot, TeleRetail ensures its users to automate their logistics in a cost-effective manner. It also minimises the energy and space requirements of local logistics besides avoiding harmful emissions.

Back in 2019, the Dutch supermarket chain Albert Heijn has revealed its new delivery robot called ‘Aitonomi’ developed by TeleRetail. The robot navigates itself using the virtual map and can be opened with the smartphone upon arrival.

Picture credits: PAL Robotics

PAL Robotics (Spain)

Founder/s: Francesco Ferro
Founded year: 2008
Funding: €600k

TIAGo Base is one of our most flexible and adaptable robots, which is ready to help in tackling the pandemic. TIAGo Base robot of PAL Robotics delivers food and transfers objects such as medication and samples within hospitals and similar environments. TIAGo Base easily adapts to its environment and staff don’t need specialised training to operate the robot. The autonomous robot makes deliveries quickly and safely, reducing the need for social interactions and also the spread of infection.

Main image picture credits: Starship Technologies

Stay tuned to Silicon Canals for more European technology news.

The post These autonomous delivery robots of Europe are all set for post-COVID era appeared first on Silicon Canals .

Startups – Silicon Canals

What Is a Content Delivery Network (CDN)?

The post What Is a Content Delivery Network (CDN)? appeared first on HostGator Blog.

You’ve heard the classic tale of the tortoise and the hare and their illustrious race, right? If not, spoiler alert!

In the end, the tortoise’s slow and steady pace wins the race. And, the hare is left feeling foolish for running most of the race fast as can be, and then piddling around while the tortoise crosses the finish line.

While this is a great anecdote to motivate people to take one step at a time toward their weight loss or career goals, it’s not a great anecdote for how users want the internet to run.

No one wants to sit around and wait for days for a website to load, even if it is making that tortoise-like slowwwww as tar progress.

Cue throbber icon followed by a frustrated yell into a pillow.

website loading icon

When people search for your website on the internet, they want sprint of the hare website speed. In fact, 47% of consumers expect a web page to load in two seconds or less, and 40% of consumers will wait no more than three seconds for a web page to render before abandoning the site.

Now, what does this reworked fable have to do with the question you Googled? Google search: What is a content delivery network?

hare

Content delivery networks (CDN) are the hares of the internet (but they are 100 percent reliable when it comes to finishing the race, as opposed to the hare in Aesop’s fable, just to get that out of the way).

In more technical terms, a CDN is a group of servers that reduce website latency time and provides speedy delivery of internet content.

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How Does a Content Delivery Network (CDN) Work?

The more you want your website to do, the more power it will need to load quickly. Think about some of the world’s favorite websites: Netflix, Facebook, and Amazon.

All of these industry giants use a CDN to speed things up. These websites have billions of daily searches and a lot going on behind the scenes to make their websites the obsessions that they are, and that means they need more power and speed.

A CDN works by placing servers at exchange points (IXPs) between different networks, offering an opportunity for different internet provides to link to each other and give each other access to resources on their respective networks. 

Additionally, a CDN places physical servers in data centers across the globe to help move traffic as quickly as possible. These CDNs provide speed and connectivity securely, cheaply, and reliably (again, a better hare than the one in Aesop’s fable). 

With the help of a CDN, these top websites can deliver content effectively and quickly, no matter what browser they are using, what internet service provider they use, and regardless of where they are located.

Can Smaller Website Benefit from Using a CDN?

It’s a given that huge companies like Facebook will use a CDN, but what about smaller websites? 

Do you really need to invest in a CDN? Well, it depends on how much you are doing on your website, and what your current website load times are.

If you use assets like HTML pages, javascript files, stylesheets, images, and videos, then you’re asking your website to do a lot of hard work, and it may need additional help.

 If you use all these assets and notice your website isn’t loading quickly, then a CDN is an easy and affordable answer.

What Are the Top Benefits of a CDN?

It’s already been stated that main benefit of CDN services is they help with latency and improves website load times. But, how?

Here are some primary ways CDN services reduce load times:

  • Since CDN servers are distributed globally, it reduces the distance between users and website resources. This means less cyber travel and faster service.
  • CDNs help reduce the amount of data transferred by compressing file sizes. Smaller files = faster load times.
  • CDNs boost the speed of sites that use TLS/SSL certificates through an optimized connection.
  • CDNs also come with hardware and software optimizations that transfer data quickly.

Let’s look at some additional benefits of a CDN.

CDNs boost reliability 

The last thing you want is for your website to go offline. When your website is down, you lose potential sales and/or the interest of your audience members.

A CDN works to help you deal with things that could potentially cause your website to go offline, such as hardware failures, spikes in traffic, malicious attacks, and boosts in your website’s popularity.

Here’s how a good CDN helps protect your site:

  • Load balancing distributes traffic evenly across several services. This makes it possible to manage boosts in traffic.
  • If one or more of the CDN servicers go offline, there are still other CDN servers working. Your traffic will be redistributed to other servers that are still working. 
  • Similarly, if one data center has technical problems, another data center can pick up the slack.

But, that’s not all! Content delivery networks also help keep your site secure. Let’s take a closer look.

CDNs improve data security

The more you can do to protect your site from hackers and security breaches, the better. 

Here’s how a CDN will help:

  • A CDN keeps your site secured with current TLS/SSL certificates. 
  • These certificates ensure the ability to verify provided identifications, the ability to encrypt info sent from one host to another, and the ability to detect forgery and tampering.
  • It provides DDoS mitigation, which means it protects a targeted server of a network from a specific type of attack and mitigates incoming threats.

If you’re looking to increase the security of your website, a CDN is a helpful tool.

CDNs reduce bandwidth costs

It’s no secret that websites can get expensive. The more bandwidth your website consumes, the more you’ll have to pay.

CDNs are capable of reducing the amount of data an origin server provides. This helps reduce hosting costs for website owners.

If you know your website will require more bandwidth, then look into a CDN now.

Wrap Up

Investing in a content delivery network is a sure-fire way to speed up your website, especially if your company operates globally.

As with any other outstanding product, when you opt to use a CDN, other critical elements of owning and operating a website won’t suffer. In other words, you’ll still be able to ensure reliability, data security, and keep your operating costs down.

For more information about web hosting or to learn more about CDNs, visit HostGator today.

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Estonian-based Bolt raises €100 million to grow its transport and food delivery app in Europe and Africa

Today Estonian ride-sharing and food delivery app Bolt (previously Taxify) has announced raising €100 million from Naya Capital Management, bringing total funds raised to €300 million and the company valuation to €1.7 billion. The startup will use the funds to further its global expansion in Europe and Africa.

Bolt, founded in 2013, started out as a ride-sharing taxi app, and is now also dominating the food delivery space in 12 countries. It has grown to having a user-base of more than 30 million users globally, and operates in more than 150 cities across Europe and Africa. In February of this year, Bolt announced a partnership with Google to appear in the Google Map’s journey planner, giving it even more visibility.

With the global pandemic taking its toll on ride-sharing apps globally, it seems that Bolt has found a positive mindset. Last week Uber announced more job cuts, and Lyft is also cutting about 17% of staff. In this context, Bolt originally requested a €50 million loan from the Estonian government, and is now a beneficiary of the government’s job retention scheme. Having so far made no large job cuts or salary reductions, the startup is holding fast for the pandemic to be over. Now with this boost of €100 million, their team is looking to the future and maintains that long-term ride-sharing will continue to be a service as much in demand as before, if not more. 

Bolt’s CEO and founder Markus Villig explained: “The crisis has temporarily changed our movement habits, but the long-term trends have stayed the same. The world is heading towards a more environmentally-friendly transport, and the popularity of owning a personal car is decreasing. Our investors share the same views and they understand that sending money doesn´t have a perspective. I am more and more convinced that the efficiency and the ability to adjust give Bolt an advantage in the field.”

Masroor Siddiqui, Managing Partner and CIO of Naya Capital Management said: “We are delighted to have the opportunity to invest in Bolt at this stage in the company’s growth story. Under Markus’ leadership, Bolt has established itself as one of the most competitive and innovative players in global mobility. We believe that Bolt is helping drive a fundamental change in how consumers interact with the transport infrastructure of their cities and look forward to the company’s continued execution on its strategic vision.”

EU-Startups

10 food delivery startups smashing it in 2020

Online food ordering has been soaring the last two months all across Europe. Customers aren’t just dabbling in grocery delivery from online supermarkets – they are sampling direct-to-consumer meal kits and prepared meals more than ever before too.

While some food delivery companies are having turbulent times, the others are booming and experiencing the unprecedented number of orders. With this in mind, we have compiled this list of 10 fast-growing European startups focusing on ready-made food delivery. Maybe some are even running in your city.

Kitch – The Portuguese startup Kitch is building delivery-first kitchens to house a selection of the city’s favourite restaurants and most creative chefs. The startup was founded in 2019 by Rui Bento and Nuno Rodrigues, two former executives of Uber. Kitch has recently announced raising a €1 million pre-seed financing round which will allow the team to develop and scale its operations and to take a first step to making food delivery more sustainable.

i-lunch – i-lunch is digital canteen startup founded by Victoria Benhaïm in 2017. The French company provides a delivery platform for balanced chef-cooked meals, connected to health data intended to create an ideal week’s diet. Since the beginning of the confinement, i-lunch has been supporting Parisian care-workers by distributing free snacks and fruit baskets.

Wetaca – Wetaca is a Madrid-based foodtech company that delivers healthy and varied chef-made meals vacuum packed to guarantee freshness up to 8 days. Founded in 2015, Wetaca has been profitable since the very beginning. In the last few months, the startup has experienced growth in the number of clients and orders– especially in Madrid (120% increase) and Barcelona (70%). With its recent €275K investment in March 2020, Wetaca is planning to grow and expand across Spain, including the cities of Bilbao, Murcia and Granada.

Keatz – Keatz has been operating since 2016 as a family of virtual restaurants that provides contemporary dishes for delivery. The company creates recipes, process, and packaging to ensure that the meals which arrive at people’s doors have the same quality that those leaving the kitchen. Currently it operates a total of 10 virtual restaurants in Berlin, Munich, Madrid, Amsterdam and Barcelona, employing around 200 people and focusing exclusively on food ‘made for delivery’, with minimal capital expenditure and time. In 2019, the startup completed a €12 million Series B funding.

HungryPanda – Founded in 2016 in the UK, HungryPanda is a food and beverage online platform which provides delivery services from Asian restaurants and supermarkets. This startup is seen as one of the key players in the field of catering delivery specialising in Chinese food. First launching its service in Nottingham, HungryPanda is currently operating in 6 countries and 30+ cities including the UK, France and Italy. In February 2020, the startup announced raising €18.3 million which will be used for hiring, product development and global expansion, particularly in the United States.

Bella&Bona – Bella & Bona is a Munich-based foodtech startup offering a premium quality food delivery service. They offer a workplace food programme with customised healthy and balanced Mediterranean lunches delivered to the companies. Founded in 2018, the company raised a €2.7 million round in January 2020 led by Plug and Play, with additional funding from investors with a strong entrepreneurial background.

AllPlants – Driven by their mission to build Earth’s most forward-thinking food company, AllPlants offers vegan hand-prepared meal delivery service across the UK. To incentivise more plant-based living, they create delicious and nutritionally balanced dishes made from 100% plants delivered frozen to customers for freshness, taste and convenience. In February 2020, allplants completed a €3.9 million funding round through investment platform Seedrs. Funds will be used to develop new food categories and serve over 60,000 meals a week from their London-based production kitchen.

FoodCheri – Foodcheri is a foodtech pioneer founded in 2015 by former LaFourchette executives, which delivers chef-prepared meals to busy professionals via smart phone. The French startup operates from a central kitchen with its own culinary team and chefs integrating the entire value chain from meal prep to delivery. In 2018, Sodexo, quality of life service provider, took a majority stake in the company which provided FoodCheri with a cash injection to expand its operations nationwide.

Parsley Box – Parsley Box was founded in 2017 by Gordon and Adrienne MacAulay after trying to find easy and nutritious ready meals for Gordon’s mother who lived alone. This Edinburgh-based startup prepares and delivers delicious and convenient meals which can be stored up to 6 months in the cupboard because of the innovative steam fresh packaging system. In 2019, Parsley Box raised €3.3 million investment topped up by an additional €1.7 million the same year. The investment followed its record sales month with over 30,000 deliveries to customers throughout the UK and will be used to accelerate growth and expand the startup’s product offering.

Taster – Founded in 2017 by Anton Soulier, Taster is a family of restaurants of a new type currently operating in London, Paris and Madrid. The company has 3 virtual food brands with meals prepared at cloud kitchens and delivered via third-party platforms. Bringing together talented chefs and fresh ingredients, Taster focuses on the food-making and customer experience. In 2019, the company raised a €7.3 million funding round with the plans to launch three new brands and open more kitchens.

By the way: If you’re a corporate or investor looking for exciting startups in a specific market for a potential investment or acquisition, check out our Startup Sourcing Service!

EU-Startups

Step-by-step Guide for On-Demand Delivery Services for Groceries?

Hi all,

I was wondering if there's any guide for On-Demand Delivery Services for Groceries that has information and guidance about what do I need to do in order to start my business up and running (like iOS/Android app for the consumer, delivery representative and the grocery store, the company structure, legal affairs, budget etc)?

Tried to google but I mostly found either for Food/Restaurant on-demand delivery service, or simply statistics about them.

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Startups – Rapid Growth and Innovation is in Our Very Nature!

A Bigger Truth About Restaurant Food Delivery

Photo by Viktor Forgacs on Unsplash

I was listening to Dan Primack’s podcast on Pro Rata and he was interviewing Senator Klobucher who is now publicly and vocally speaking out against Uber purchasing Grubhub and has tried to mobilize against this.

Her argument is that if Uber buys Grubhub (which itself once merged with Seamless) it would mean that Uber Eats / Grubhub would control half the market and that with DoorDash the two together would control 90% of the market. I think that’s a largely flawed fight to be picking and of all the uses of Senator Klobuchar’s I could think of some much more productive fights to be having.

For starters Uber itself has had to lay off 27% of its workforce due to the pandemic and has been severely impacted financially from the crisis with no immediate respite in sight. It’s core business was already struggling to become profitable, so having tertiary businesses like food delivery that can deliver needed profits would be welcome to their financial stability. And the market would still have DoorDash and PostMates duking it out as well as the potential that players like Instacart broadens its business one day or Amazon gets into food delivery.

Even more likely is eventual technology disruption where drones deliver foods and make it hard for existing car delivery services to compete. It won’t happen right away but I’ve seen some innovative companies doing exactly this in places like Australia where they are taking a more liberal approach to allowing drone deliveries. Therein lies the advantages of free markets and competition and if we really believed it were that easy to buy off your largest competitor and be a monopolist we’d all be surfing on AOL TimeWarner portals.

But the broader issue that hasn’t garnished much press attention is how the restaurant industry itself is being transformed and what tools a modern restaurant will need to compete. What is the Shopify of the restaurant industry? I have some compelling data that suggests it may just become ChowNow.

We know that the restaurant business already operates on thin margins and many struggle to survive. So when delivery services came along many were willing to pay the fee to try and increase business. It was only about 10–15% of their actual total revenue per month so for many it wasn’t a battle worth fighting — they just put up with the food delivery company fees. Customers were happy and restaurants focused on their in-store business.

The problem for the restaurants is that the more successful the “aggregators” of customer demand become over time, the less power the restaurants themselves have individually. This will largely be true whether you have 2 strong competitors or 5 because unless a delivery company can make a profit it won’t continue to stay in business.

The delivery companies own the customer relationship and can drive traffic to the most profitable restaurants for them. Obviously if you have a great restaurant brand with differentiated food people search for you by name but for many people looking for pizza, sushi, Mexican food, Thai food, whatever, you might go with the choice put in front of you if it’s being recommended or delivered more quickly. The delivery companies also own many of the assets like the photography so they can make certain options look much more attractive.

So just like when Groupon came out many small merchants welcomed the uptick in traffic, without owning the customer you lose the most valuable asset — the ability to re-market to your customer base and encourage them to become more loyal and more frequent customers. You lose the ability to up-sell and cross-sell products. And just like with Groupon the small businesses ended up having many unprofitable customers.

At Upfront we always took the approach that we wanted to back startups that enabled merchants to own the customer relationship and to increase profits by becoming excellent at marketing and serving ones most loyal customers.

So several years ago we backed a company called ChowNow that enables restaurants to offer self-service ordering for pick-up or delivery and the restaurant owns all of the customer information and relationship — ChowNow is simply a SaaS enablement product.

The company has done well over the past several year but never really captured the same press mindshare as the food delivery companies because when a company shows up at your house you get to know that brand rather than the tech that enables restaurants.

Covid-19 has changed all of that. Whereas pickup & delivery may have been 10–15% of a restaurant’s business before it’s currently 100% and when it’s your entire business the thought of paying huge commissions to a third-party delivery service becomes much less attractive. So while many restaurants knew they eventually needed to invest in better order management software, many had been putting it off.

But just as many product or apparel companies were happy selling at Amazon, Walmart or Nordstrom in the past and have lately realized the importance of Shopify and serving customers directly — so, too, are restaurants. Enter ChowNow.

What data do I have to make the case?

  • ChowNow now has 17,000 restaurants using its SaaS platform for take-out and delivery and is adding more than 2,000 / month right now (and trending up)
  • 10 million diners now use the ChowNow ordering platform vs. 24 million for GrubHub, so like Shopify while they built the customer base slowly and with capital efficiency they are now rivaling the bigger players in footprint
  • Last year they were serving 50,000 customers / day through their platform and did approximately $ 500 million in GMV (the value of the orders placed), this year they are on track to do $ 3 billion (with a B) and expect to end the year at a revenue run rate that may top $ 100 million (yes, I asked for permission to publish these numbers).

If you want to see a short spot that outlines the importance of the restaurant industry arming itself with better software tools to serve and market to their customers you may enjoy this 60-second video that makes it clear why it matters. It speaks volumes to why we all love our local restauranteurs and want to see them survive …

Or if you want to see the argument laid out clearly by a customer, look no further than Motorino Pizza in NYC who posted this note that appears before you enter their website:


A Bigger Truth About Restaurant Food Delivery was originally published in Both Sides of the Table on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

Both Sides of the Table – Medium

Equity Monday: Food delivery economics, and global layoffs

Good morning and welcome back to TechCrunch’s Equity Monday, a brief jumpstart for your week.

A few housekeeping notes. First, the main, long-from Equity episodes still drop every Friday, so if you are behind, check your podcast feed. Also, we’re running a listener survey which you can find here, in the last ep’s shownotes. And finally, I am off next week, so Danny Crichton will take over Equity Monday for us. I’ll be right back.

All that behind us, here’s what we talked about this morning:

Equity will be back Friday morning with more. Welcome to the week!

Equity drops every Monday at 7:00 AM PT and Friday at 6:00 am PT, so subscribe to us on Apple PodcastsOvercastSpotify and all the casts.

Startups – TechCrunch

Curri rolls out nationwide delivery service for construction materials industry

A little over a year after its graduation from Y Combinator’s demo day, the on-demand construction materials delivery service Curri is beginning to offer its services in all 50 states.

Co-founded by Matt Lafferty and Brian Gonzalez, Curri aims to solve one of the major hurdles for local construction suppliers who miss out on sales because of an inability to deliver to contractors when they need it.

The company estimates that it saves its customers roughly half the cost of deploying an in-house fleet for delivery. 

“They act as a wholesaler doing all the sales, but they’re also acting as a logistics company as well,” said Lafferty. “We provide a solution for them to flex up or down and save money.”

After graduating from Y Combinator in the summer of 2019, the company tested its services in the Southern California region. Now, as construction looks ready to return to a more normal schedule in the aftermath of the COVID-19 epidemic, the company is capitalizing on increased demand to offer its services nationwide.

“Construction has stayed essential through this whole crisis,” said Lafferty. “Depending on how states were handling it there were different levels of what was seen as essential construction. Industry-wide there was what I would call a great pause… [But] since April we’ve grown week-over-week and even more so now when things are really lifting.”

The company charges its customers by mile traveled and operates with a similar business model to Uber or Lyft, says Lafferty. The drivers are all gig workers, but Lafferty says they’re paid a premium to other delivery services because of the urgency of the company’s deliveries. “We have high-dollar items that are going out and they’re typically more urgent,” Lafferty said. “We’re able to pay our driver 25% to 30% better.”

The Los Angeles-based company raised seed funding from Initialized Capital, the firm founded by Garry Tan and Alexis Ohanian (which also employs former TechCrunch staffer, Kim-Mai Cutler… Hi Kim-Mai!)

Startups – TechCrunch