Corporate catering service EAT Club is suspending operations in New York City as of today.
EAT Club sent us the following statement about the matter:
EAT Club will be suspending service in New York City as of Friday, 8/3. As part of our ongoing market assessment, we believe that suspending service in this saturated market is the right move for our young business at this time. Following our acquisition of Farm Hill earlier this year, we continue to see strong growth in both the Bay area and Los Angeles— delivering over 20k meals per day – and want to focus on new and existing markets with the greatest immediate growth potential. – Doug Leeds, CEO, EAT Club
We reached back out to EAT Club to see if those NY employees were laid off, or if they have been reassigned within the company. We will update this post as we learn more.
As the company mentioned, the move comes just a few months after EAT Club acquired Farm Hill, a different corporate catering service, and got a new CEO (Leeds).
But it’s also in line with the larger shifts we’ve seen happening as the corporate catering sector matures. In May, Peach laid off 33 percent of its staff after a “sales experiment” didn’t pan out. In April, Square augmented its Caviar service by acquiring “certain assets” of Zesty. But elsewhere, ezCater raised a whopping $100 million for its corporate catering, and expanded into France through its acquisition of GoCater.
All these machinations are also coming at a time when free corporate lunches are coming under scrutiny. Mountain View put in new rules clamping down on free lunches at Facebook, and San Francisco is looking at banning corporate cafeterias in new office construction.