Slice, a restaurant-tech platform for independent pizzerias, announced today it has raised $40 million in Series D funding. The round was led by Cross Creek with participation from existing investors including 01 Advisors, GGV Capital, KKR, and Primary Ventures. It brings Slice’s total funding to date to $165 million.
The Slice platform is a suite of tools, including online ordering, a rewards program, delivery facilitation, and a POS system, made specifically with independent pizzerias in mind. The company’s Chief Product Officer, Preethy Vaidyanathan, explained during an interview with The Spoon last week that the idea is to provide small and/or independent pizza shops and chains with the same digital advantages of a major chain like Domino’s.
Whereas most online ordering software is built to serve any type of restaurant business, Slice’s is, according to Vaidyanathan, geared towards the “specialized needs that a pizzeria has.” Menus are one simple example, since pizza shops have to accommodate for things like different crust styles, and half-and-half toppings. Via a Domino’s or Pizza Hut app, making these choices is a straightforward process that takes just a couple clicks. Slice is trying to provide the same ease of ordering for independent pizzerias.
Restaurants pay a fixed cost per order to use the Slice technology, as opposed to the percentage-per-transaction model used by most third-party delivery services.
On the consumer-facing side, Slice functions as an online marketplace for pizzerias and is available for both iOS and Android. Vaidyanathan said the marketplace is available across all 50 U.S. states and that there are “well over 15,0000 shops” in the Slice network currently.
The funding news comes on the heels of Slice’s new Rewards program, which is kind of like a Starbucks app for pizzerias. Users get points for every $15 spent at a participating shop. Once they have enough points, they receive a free pie. Meanwhile, the rewards program incentivizes consumers to support local businesses, many of which are still struggling from the last year’s shutdowns and restrictions.
Along those lines, Slice said in today’s press release that it will use the new funds to expand its product line as well as invest more in its Slice Accelerate program, which invests $15,000 into select pizzerias to help them digitize their businesses.