Dubai-based Grubtech announced today it has raised $3.4 million in pre-Series A funding for its software platform that powers ghost kitchens and delivery-only restaurants. Investors in the round are unnamed but include “large regional family offices, a U.S.-based venture capital firm as well as reputable angel investors.”
Grubtech says its cloud-based software platform is built specifically for cloud kitchen operations or restaurants running multiple brands, virtual or otherwise, out of a single kitchen. There are plenty of both nowadays, the pandemic having forced many restaurants to serve the bulk of their meals as delivery or pickup orders. The resulting uptick in both ghost kitchen spaces and virtual restaurants run from underutilized kitchens mean restaurants must now juggle even more order channels than before the pandemic.
Grubtech’s product promises to simplify operations by centralizing important tasks and information on a single dashboard in the restaurant. For example, instead of a restaurant staffer having to manually input different orders from different virtual brands into the main system, Grubtech automates that process. If a restaurant needs to update a menu item, they can do so via Grubtech, which will ensure every copy of the menu across every order channel gets the same update. Restaurants can also view all sales, integrate with some third-party delivery providers, and, for an additional cost, add things like a branded website or “contactless” dining room app. The company says its software reduces the “click-to-doorbell” time for an order by 20 percent and saves “approximately” 25 percent on labor costs.
Current customers include a number of companies in the Middle East-North Africa region, such as Delivery Hero’s kitchen in Abu Dhabi and Dubai-based iKcon.
If 2020 was the year ghost kitchens became a mainstream concept, 2021 will be about making them more efficient, and simplifying the tech stack is one way to do that. Centralizing restaurant order channels and data isn’t a new phenomenon (see Ordermark, Lunchbox, and others), but it will get fine-tuned for ghost kitchens and virtual restaurants as more restaurants adopt those channels.
Grubtech said today it will use the new funds to further develop its product and expand farther across the Middle East-North Africa region as well as Europe and the Americas.