This edition of MRM’s News Bites features Compass Group, Punchh, Parts Town, Uber, Gather and OpenTable, FEAST, Toast, ezCater, wagamama, Serve, SOCi, TroyGould, Mobivity, Foodsby, Apptizer, Atomic Wings, thel Great Vegas Festival of Beer and PourMyBeer.
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Stop Food Waste Day
Compass Group,, together with some of the most influential companies and celebrity chefs, is rallying millions of consumers to accelerate the fight against food waste with Stop Food Waste Day™. The White House has further elevated this effort, by acknowledging the month of April as Winning on Reducing Food Waste Month, supported by a historic interagency agreement between Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). “The future of food depends on action from us now, which is why we have established this formal partnership among USDA, EPA and FDA,” says US Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue.
Globally, millions zero-food-waste meals will be served on Wednesday, April 24, throughout Compass cafés in hospitals, schools, arenas, corporations, museums and senior living communities. Chefs, including celebrity and humanitarian José Andrés, will encourage people to take the pledge to make every day Stop Food Waste Day, lead live cooking demonstrations, host zero-waste dinners and educate the public on ways to reduce food waste, inspiring reduction in both professional and home kitchens.
“As a chef, every bit of food wasted represents a meal that we didn’t serve to someone in need. Wasted food is a wasted opportunity, as well as the land, water, energy and love that goes into growing and distributing our food,” says Andrés, a nominee for the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize.
Compass Group’s network of global partners–which includes Google and HSBC—universities and hospitals like Carnegie Mellon and Jersey Shore Medical, plus industry influencers like Andrés, Tom Colicchio and Danny Meyer, among others, will help mobilize the movement to drive results.
“Chefs are positioned to change the food system,” says Tristram Stuart, an expert on the environmental and social impact of food. “Compass Group is giving them the power to be culture leaders, recognizing they are the number one asset we have to turn this crisis around.” Compass Group and Toast Ale, founded by Stuart, will host a major food waste awareness event this fall to demonstrate how easy, delicious and fun it is to serve the masses meals and drinks made with ingredients that routinely go to waste.
Last year, Stop Food Waste Day went global with support from Compass Group NA’s parent company, Compass Group PLC, headquartered in the UK, uniting 34 countries and 12 million people behind the company’s mission to create a positive impact for people, planet and the food system.
On track to meet its goal of reducing waste 25 percent by 2020, Compass Group has announced a long-term goal to reduce food waste 50% by 2030, joining the US Food Loss and Waste 2030 group and aligning with the United Nation’s waste-reduction agenda. Compass NA invests in training, digital platforms and innovative systems to uncover opportunities to reduce waste throughout the lifecycle of food – from harvesting and producing to purchasing and portioning.
“Our goal is to raise awareness of the massive food waste issue and provide solutions to reduce it,” says Amy Keister, Compass Group SVP of Sustainability. “With our reach, our partners and human nature to do the right thing, we can dramatically reduce food waste and create positive impact in the global food system,” says CEO Dominic Blakemore, Compass Group PLC.
For a full list of celebrity chefs, restaurant partners and cities honoring Stop Food Waste Day, visit stopfoodwasteday.com.
Punchh launched Punchh WiFi Marketing to help brick-and-mortar retailers identify potential new customers and market to them in real time. Punchh WiFi Marketing provides seamless integration with Punchh Marketing Cloud, and accelerates retailers’ ability to identify and engage a potential customer as soon as they walk through the door with a range of new acquisition channels. Engaging customers via WiFi provides access to more customer data, while simultaneously offering machine learning capabilities for better segmentation and improved promotion targeting.
The modern-day consumer walks into stores with a smartphone in hand or a laptop in their bag. These same devices that bring a customer into a business offering WiFi can also be detrimental if the business does not start building a relationship at that point, since the customer can find the competition within seconds on Google or Yelp. But once they connect to WiFi, Punchh allows brands to engage immediately and provide a personalized shopping experience, distributing the right offer at the right time.
“Regular customers help retailers stay in business, but turning a one-time guest into a loyalist is extremely challenging,” said Punchh CEO Shyam Rao. “Retailers need to know how they’re reaching first-time customers and what that first experience was like in order to improve that experience and keep them coming back for more. If a customer is in your store and you don’t start building a relationship that can grow with timely and relevant communications and offers, it is a missed opportunity. Not only does our WiFi solution provide critical customer data – it also leverages that data quickly to help brands make swift marketing decisions.”
Here are just some of the features:
- Increase same store sales and customer lifetime value (CLV) by extending the reach of the brand’s acquisition strategy.
- Accelerate customer visit frequency, spend, and offer redemption rates.
- Easily add customer acquisition channels, such as list/web imports, POS integrations, SMS, and multiple payment options, as marketing strategies grow.
- Create a unified and personalized in-store and online experience that caters to different customer profiles.
- Predict customer behavior and provide recommendations for personalized offers.
Parts Town Partners
Parts Town launched master distribution partnerships with Electrolux Professional for its accessories and consumables and sister brand Kelvinator Commercial for its refrigeration equipment parts during Q1 2019. These master distribution partnerships, two of the three total added during the quarter, allow customers to leverage the benefits of shopping with Parts Town to access Electrolux Professional accessories and consumables and Kelvinator Commercial parts. Parts Town is able to deliver parts, consumables and accessories to its customers faster than ever before, with all in-stock orders shipping same day until 9 p.m. ET Monday to Friday and until 4 p.m. ET on Saturday.
“We are committed to delivering the highest quality parts, accessories and consumables from manufacturers like Electrolux Professional and Kelvinator Commercial to our customers when they need them. These partnerships ensure we are always able to provide our customers with not only the highest quality parts, but also with accessories and consumables like a brush for a panini grill or a detergent for a combi oven, enabling peak equipment performance,” said Clint Holder, PARTnership Builder (aka: Vice President of Manufacturer Partnerships) at Parts Town.
Parts Town now also sells Electrolux Professional’s cleaning detergents, which includes commercial detergents for dishwashers and ovens, rinse aids and degreasers. These detergents, which were recently released in the United States, have been expertly tested and guarantee the best performance for Electrolux appliances.
“Electrolux Professional is proud to partner with Parts Town in North America to distribute our accessories and consumables, plus our Kelvinator Commercial spare parts,” said Joe Takhar, Regional Service Director – North American, Electrolux Professional. “Parts Town’s commitment to supply only genuine OEM parts, accessories and consumables is important to ensuring our equipment delivers the results our customers expect. With Parts Town, we can deliver.”
Uber is launching a new way for businesses to pick up the tab on your next Uber trip. Vouchers makes it easy for businesses of any kind to sponsor transportation for their customers. Brands can use Uber Vouchers to create a differentiated customer experience to attract new clients or support loyalty and service for existing customers.
“With the introduction of vouchers, Uber’s goal is to unlock an additional growth lever for businesses by creating an innovative way to bring customers to their door or wherever they need to go,” stated, Ronnie Gurion, General Manager and Global Head of Uber for Business. “As companies look for new technology and novel ways to engage with consumers, Uber Vouchers provide a perk that businesses know their customers will use.”
The Uber for business (“U4B”) team began beta testing Vouchers late last year across a diverse group of retailers, restaurants and services, with over 100 global partners — including TGI Friday's, Live Nation, the Golden State Warriors, MGM Resorts, Sprint, Freshworks and Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield. Westfield malls, for instance, are using Vouchers to help provide their guests and visitors best-in-class customer service, including convenient, hassle-free transportation solutions. Uber is now adding new partners, including Allstate, to broaden the program.
While restaurants are already leveraging the Uber Eats app to reach more consumers with delivery, Vouchers now creates an opportunity to promote dine-in experiences by removing barriers to get to their physical location. Uber Eats restaurant partner, TGI Fridays has been using Vouchers in just this way and is now partnering with the Uber platform both for delivery and ridesharing to create a curated experience for its customers.
“We at TGI Fridays are excited about launching Uber Vouchers as it will provide another opportunity to ensure we are taking care of our guests who are enjoying our great bar experience and providing them a safe and responsible travel option back home,” stated Ray Blanchette, Chief Executive Officer of TGI Fridays.
In the event and entertainment space, consumers now have options to stay-at-home more than ever before so offering customers added convenience is key. For organizations like and the Golden State Warriors, Vouchers provide an appealing way for venues to bundle their offers, or provide a loyalty perk, and make it easier for consumers to attend events and improve their overall experience.
Companies who already offer customers transportation such as shuttle services or rental cars, be it in the hospitality sector or in the insurance space, can also make effective use of Vouchers. The feature delivers a real-time and seamless solution to provide consumers with additional choice and flexibility in their transportation, while also reducing operational processes and costs for their business.
For MGM Resorts, Vouchers offers a consumer-friendly means to facilitate travel between their various properties, restaurants and shows. The global reach of Uber’s brand means that MGM can rely on Uber Vouchers to offer local or international customers with transportation regardless of where travellers call home. Vouchers can help reduce wait-times by providing an on-demand and asset-light means for businesses to get their clients from point A to B.
Businesses can sign-up for Vouchers by visiting uber.com/vouchers. U4B’s Guest Services team is available to support businesses as they use and integrate this new offering. Companies can create customized Voucher campaigns and programs within a specified budget, set pick-up and drop-off locations, and an established time for an offer. All details can be tailored to an event, promotion or service. Businesses can send vouchers to their customers through email, social media and mobile messaging. When a rider redeems a Voucher, it is added automatically into the Payment section of the rider’s Uber app until it expires.
In addition to a web-based tool, there is also an Uber Vouchers API available. Uber is currently working with Freshworks on an API integration into their platform so they can leverage vouchers across their suite of solutions. Freshwork will make use of Vouchers to help drive customer engagement and incentivize employee performance.
“Freshworks is always looking for innovative ways to help our customers offer the best possible experience. We see a wide number of use cases for Uber Vouchers to incentivise Freshworks users and increase loyalty of their customers,” s tated, Anand Venkatraman, VP, Global Partnerships, Freshworks.
Gather Teams with OpenTable
Gather partnered with OpenTable to make finding and booking an event a more seamless experience. Through this partnership, Gather customers are able to promote their event spaces to the hundreds of thousands of people visiting OpenTable Private Dining pages each year. OpenTable diners seeking private dining will now have more options to discover and book a space and enjoy a seamless planning experience.
“No matter the occasion, or how big or small the party, OpenTable prides itself on providing a diverse network of dining options,” said Susan Lee, VP of Business Development at OpenTable. “This partnership furthers our commitment to provide the most comprehensive platform for restaurant reservations, now with even more options for users seeking the perfect dining destination for private events or gatherings.”
The Gather Booking Network allows restaurants and venues to tap into a larger audience by providing more ways to promote their businesses in the top places where event planners and diners go to find and book events. The partnership also streamlines the booking flow between the diner and participating restaurants.
“At Gather, we’ve always been committed to helping our restaurants and venues grow their events businesses,” said Nick Miller, co-founder and CEO at Gather. “Through this exciting OpenTable partnership, we’re helping customers attract and win more new business than ever.”
OpenTable expands the existing Gather Booking Network which includes partners such as EVENTup, BizBash, and Wedding Spot, with more to be announced in the coming months.
FEAST on Healthy Food
This week, in partnership with Tom Colicchio’s restaurant group, Crafted Hospitality, FEAST (Food Education, Access and Support Together) celebrated the graduation of its first NYC Wellness Program cohorts in Harlem, Coney Island and Jackson Heights. FEAST’s program, which focuses on providing nutrition education and access to healthy food in a support group setting, has impacted the lives of over 100 under-resourced NYC residents facing food insecurity.
FEAST was founded to address a variety of disparities stemming from a broken food system in which the most affordable food available to families is also the most processed and the least nutritious. FEAST’s model is based on the understanding that increasing health requires three main ingredients: whole foods, whole people and whole communities. FEAST focuses on these complex issues through its holistic Wellness Program, which combines practical tools like nutrition education and cooking classes, with food access, peer-support, and community development.
The results of FEAST efforts have been impressive, measurably impacting participants’ physical, emotional and social well-being. Over 70 percent of participants lose weight, 82 percent report an improvement in pre-existing dietary diseases, and two-thirds increase their self esteem. After five years of successful programming in South Los Angeles, FEAST expanded its reach to New York City in January 2019. At the first graduation at Harlem’s PS 112, FEAST’s Culinary Partner, Tom Colicchio remarked on the importance of FEAST’s combination of skill-building, social and emotional support.
“From listening to those who have spoken today, I can tell that this community right here really supports each other… It’s great to see the first class graduate from FEAST and this is just the beginning of a healthier life for FEAST participants and their families. Once we start to eat healthier and start to feel better, there’s so much we can accomplish, ”Colicchio said while addressing the graduating group on Thursday.
“Tom and Crafted Hospitality have been incredibly generous with their time and resources. They understand the power food has to create community, and to not just feed, but to nourish,” says Dana Rizer, FEAST’s Executive Director. “We are so thankful for the support of all our NYC partners and supporters and wouldn’t have been able to make this incredible impact without them.”
FEAST, a nonprofit organization founded in 2013 with the mission of promoting wellness and enriching lives through the power of healthy food and human connection, has impacted the lives of thousands in Los Angeles and expanded its program reach to NYC over the past year.
Toast Raises $250M
Toast raised $250 million in Series E funding at a $2.7 billion valuation led by TCV and Tiger Global Management along with participation from existing investors including Bessemer Venture Partners, Lead Edge Capital and funds and accounts managed by T. Rowe Price Associates, Inc. Following a period of tremendous growth – during which revenue increased 148 percent in 2018 – this fundraise establishes Toast as the leading restaurant management platform for restaurants of all sizes.
“At TCV, we invest in companies that have the potential to reshape entire industries. By providing restaurants of all sizes with access to innovative technology, Toast is leveling the playing field and leading the industry’s transition to the cloud,” said David Yuan, general partner at TCV. “Our investment will enable Toast to extend their platform beyond point-of-sale and guest-facing technology, and in doing so, create a powerful SaaS platform with a superlative business model. We’re excited to partner with Toast as they accelerate the growth of the community they serve.” TCV invested in some of the largest franchises in technology including ExactTarget, Facebook, Netflix, and Spotify; David Yuan will join Toast’s board of directors.
During the past year, the number of restaurants that selected Toast more than doubled as globally acclaimed brands like José Andrés’ ThinkFoodGroup and Tartine Bakery chose Toast in addition to high-growth concepts like Joe Coffee Company, Eggs Up Grill, JACKS Urban Eats, and The County Line.
“Last year we celebrated the five year anniversary of our first Toast customer, Barismo. Now with tens of thousands of restaurants powered by Toast – and nearly 1,500 employees serving our community – it’s impressive to see how far we’ve come,” said Chris Comparato, CEO of Toast. “At our core, we believe every restaurant should benefit from the massive investment we continue to make in restaurant technology.”
Toast will invest over $1 billion in research and development — over the next five years — to continue building software and hardware designed specifically for the restaurant industry. The Series E investment will enable Toast to help solve some of the industry’s most pressing challenges:
Attracting, engaging, and retaining guests: Today, guests spend tens of billions of dollars at restaurants powered by Toast. Restaurants like SuViche already use solutions like Toast Go™ and Toast Guest Feedback to accelerate speed of service by up to 40 percent, increase revenue, and capture guest feedback in real-time. New guest marketing capabilities planned for 2019 will enable restaurateurs to deliver highly personalized offers and campaigns triggered by guest behavior.
Recruiting and retaining talent: Restaurants using Toast Point of Sale already benefit from higher sales, increased tips, and lower staff turnover. For example, with Toast Guest Facing Display, Broad Street Baking saw staff turnover significantly decrease as tips increased by 58 percent. New products planned for this year will simplify back-office operations and arm restaurateurs with tools to recruit, hire, and retain talent in a competitive labor market.
Improving operations and increasing profitability: Today, the Toast Platform processes over 2,500 requests per second across tens of thousands of restaurants. Through Toast Reporting and Analytics, restaurateurs can monitor the performance of their business in real-time –on any device — so they can run their business from anywhere. Investments planned in 2019 will provide restaurants with access to new reporting capabilities and insights.
Jeffrey Pandolfino, the owner of Green & Tonic, a five-location café in Connecticut, shared how Toast’s focus on the restaurant industry impacted his business: “As we outgrew our legacy point-of-sale-system, we needed a cloud-based platform to build our business on,” said Pandolfino. “With Toast, we’re not only processing orders faster, but we’ve also seen aspects of our business like catering and delivery grow by more than 50 percent.”
ezCater Raises $150M
ezCater® raised a $150 million Series D-1 investment round co-led by Lightspeed Venture Partners and GIC. ezCater will use the funds to continue its global expansion and widen its lead as the #1 catering marketplace and software platform for restaurant operators. The funding round brings ezCater’s total funding to $320 million.
Catering is a $60+ billion industry in the U.S. alone and is growing 50% faster than the overall restaurant industry (Technomic). Restaurants require different menus, operations, and technology to manage their catering business. ezCater’s fully integrated catering marketplace and software platform is uniquely designed to help restaurants of all sizes get more incremental catering orders and manage their entire catering operations. Today, more than 60,000 restaurants and caterers from local independent restaurants to national chains partner with ezCater.
“ezCater keeps evolving to meet the needs of the catering industry,” said Jennifer Sanders, Senior National Catering Manager at Schlotzsky’s. “The number of new orders they send us keeps growing, and so does the value in our partnership.”
Catering is also different for the catering buyers. Their orders are for business meetings and other events that are high-stakes and tightly scheduled. They cannot entrust their orders to any party that does not offer sophisticated technology, concierge-class customer service, and broad selection. Businesspeople from organizations of all sizes and industries, including 97 percent of the Fortune 500, rely on ezCater’s online ordering platform and award-winning customer service for reliable catering.
“We’re the long-time market leaders and continue to have huge global ambitions,” said Stefania Mallett, co-founder and CEO at ezCater. “This funding expands our ability to help our catering partners grow in a way that no one else can.”
In addition to Lightspeed Venture Partners and GIC, this funding round included participation from Light Street Capital, existing investors Wellington Management Company LLP, ICONIQ Capital, Insight Venture Partners, Quadrille Capital, and others.
wagamama to Grow in NYC
wagamama will open a second restaurant this year in New York as part of its US growth strategy. The UK-based restaurant group will open a new Midtown spot later this year.
Set to launch in late summer, the newest wagamama will provide for upwards of 185 covers, an external patio and a full liquor license. wagamama has also decided to close its East Village location on April 12th due to location issues and a lack of a liquor license.
The closing will allow wagamama to focus on plans for the Midtown restaurant and operations at its recently opened Murray Hill location. The Murray Hill eatery—which has 198 covers, a large outdoor space and a liquor license—arrived on Third Avenue on February 6, 2019 and has already been warmly welcomed by the community and restaurant reviewers.
wagamama Chief Marketing Officer Ross Farquhar said, “Recognized as a pioneer in the industry, wagamama was the first to introduce the communal table, the open kitchen and serving made-to-order dishes as soon as they’re ready. These new locations reflect wagamama’s ongoing commitment to spreading its bowl to soul philosophy: wholesome, fresh food and a welcoming environment to nourish the body as well as the soul. With close to 200 eateries around the world, wagamama remains dedicated to expanding and building a brand that cares deeply for its guests and their needs.”
Delivery by Facial Recognition
Serve integrated its patented facial recognition technology into its blockchain logistics platform. Users of the Serve Platform can now require facial recognition at every step of the delivery process. With this enhancement, Serve’s technology can now be used to secure deliveries where chain of custody and proof of delivery are critical, such as with medical devices and pharmaceuticals.
"The inclusion of our patented facial recognition system allows Serve to stand alone in modern, on-demand delivery and logistics technology,” says Shahan Ohanessian, CEO, Serve. “This combination of technology and forward-thinking will allow delivery providers across the world to secure sensitive products such as pharmaceuticals in ways previously unavailable to them. Our technology will foster unparalleled confidence with enterprises and service providers within the Serve ecosystem. As a result, our blockchain-based on-demand technology can increase transparency and decentralize last-mile logistics for users across the globe, while offering solutions to many of the toughest problems facing this industry.”
SOCi's Customer Service Portal
SOCi lauched a new full-service Customer Success Portal. This go-to source for SOCi customer training, product support, critical updates, and self-service help content and FAQs elevates the overall SOCi customer experience, empowering both national and local marketers to take their localized social marketing efforts to the next level.
In today's always-on environment, customers expect more immediate access to resources and quick turnaround to their questions and needs. As a result, customer experience is on par to overtake price and product as a key brand differentiator by 2020 — with 86 percent of buyers willing to pay more for better customer support (The Walker Study). Further, customers want to be able to find answers through self-service options. According to a report from ZenDesk, 50 percent of customers think it’s important to be able to solve product or service issues themselves and 70 percent expect a company’s website to include a self-service application.
SOCi Customer Success Portal was created to include self-paced on-demand training courses through SOCi University, covering topics, from Platform Basics to educational topics like The Best Practices to Managing your Online Reputation. The portal will also include FAQs, how-to-videos and an interactive discussion board for customers to collaborate, ask questions and share best practices with other users to help one another better navigate the multi-location brand marketing landscape.
"The SOCi Customer Success Portal is the ideal learning tool for our marketing team,” said Jessica Ray, Director of Marketing Technology at American Family Care. “With the online courses offered in SOCi University, we will be able to onboard franchisees to the platform and feel confident that they can navigate the software from their own location(s)."
By providing a go-to source for training, support, and updates, the Customer Success Portal helps customers better utilize SOCi offerings in a meaningful, productive way, which in turn helps them better run their localized social marketing programs.
“We created the SOCi Customer Success Portal as part of our ongoing commitment to invest in delivering exceptional experiences for our customers,” said David Marler VP of Customer Success at SOCi. “As we have learned from marketers in all areas of an organization, this requires us to deliver the necessary tools and resources to effectively use and administer the SOCi platform. This portal provides on-demand access to the tools our customers at both the corporate and local business levels need to quickly get up to speed on the platform’s latest features and join conversations with like-minded marketers, empowering our customers to make the most of their localized social marketing efforts.”
The Customer Success Portal will be available immediately at no extra cost to any customer with a SOCi login.
MRM Columnist Most Influential
TroyGould business litigator Pooja Nair is among 75 honorees in today’s Los Angeles Business Journal special supplement honoring the City’s most influential women attorneys.
“In the two years since Nair joined the firm, she co-founded the firm’s burgeoning food and beverage practice, assisting clients with brand protection, trade secrets, and employment issues,” says the annual supplement, published today. “Nair specializes in working with clients in the food and beverage industry and with start-ups in the technology and innovation space.”
The report adds that Nair, who obtained her J.D. from Harvard Law School and undergraduate degree from UC San Diego, writes a monthly column for Modern Restaurant Management on the legal developments affecting the restaurant industry.”
Los Angeles Business Journal Publisher and CEO Anna Magzanyan explained that the honorees have been recognized for “exceptional legal skill and achievement across the full spectrum of responsibility, exemplary leadership as evidenced by the highest professional and ethical standards, and for contributions to the Los Angeles community at large… there are some particularly stellar attorneys in the LA region who happen to be women…thank you for working to keep the people and businesses of LA on the right track.”
Nair’s expertise includes a comprehensive range of employment issues including compliance, internal investigations, and litigation. She understands business needs and develops employment practices and procedures that are both compliant with applicable laws and practical. She has experience handling internal complaints to de-escalate issues and conduct discrete and thorough internal investigations.
“In November 2018, she second chaired a four-week financial fraud jury trial, which resulted in a $20 million plaintiffs’ verdict,” the report says. Nair is currently serving on the Board of Directors for the Harvard Club of Southern California and is a Chair for the Young Professionals Board of the Los Angeles Music and Art School.
Mobivity's New Feature
Mobivity unveiled its innovative frequency impact technology enabling restaurant and retail brands to fully assess a variety of factors affecting consumer frequency. Brick-and-mortar merchants can now tap into consumer purchase frequency performance connected to point-of-sale (POS) data that has until now only been available to the ever-expanding world of eCommerce retail. The new technology, developed by Mobivity’s world-class Data Science team introduces a patent-pending big data approach utilizing Mobivity’s Recapture technology. This tracks each individual transaction at the POS, while combining other customer data points to track how frequently each unique customer visits a store and what causes them to increase that frequency over time. Relating frequency to average ticket, day parts, and other insights is also provided via an elegant dashboard interface so that dialing in all aspects of a brand’s product, pricing, and promotions mix can be optimized to achieve maximum frequency.
“Revenue growth for brick and mortar merchants is primarily driven by consumer frequency,” said Dennis Becker, Mobivity Chairman and CEO. “In the past, merchants have had to rely on anecdotal evidence or expensive manual analysis to assess frequency impact from marketing programs to value pricing to new products. This new technology opens an entirely new dimension to our clients. They can now see whether or not a marketing program, new product, or other program actually had a positive effect on increasing customer frequency. We can’t wait to get this tool in the hands of the world-class brands that are seeking key insights within their basket-level data, and help them identify trends that help drive additional customer visits, and ultimately spend.”
To date, Mobivity’s Recognition has provided reporting tools that allow multi-unit franchise brands to drill down into unique transactional data. These show how specific Recurrency-based offers and promotions effect average customer spend, all while capturing purchase history across an often disparate point-of-sale system. This new technology allows brands to not only measure how frequent their customers visit, but also how specific, line-item measured offers or products drive additional visits and increase frequency over time at the store, market, national level.
Foodsby in San Diego
Foodsby launched its service in the San Diego market. San Diego is the 17th major U.S. market served by Foodsby, and the first Foodsby market anywhere in the state of California.
Participating Foodsby restaurants in San Diego include House of Bites, P.F. Chang’s, Lemonade, Chick-Fil-A, On The Border, Wich Addiction, Opera Patisserie and Marketplace Grille. National restaurant partners for Foodsby include TGI Fridays, Corner Bakery, SmashBurger, Noodles World Kitchen, Famous Dave’s, Schlotzky’s, Moe’s Southwest Grill and McAlister’s Deli.
Unlike competitors such as DoorDash, Uber Eats and ezCater, Foodsby generates revenue for restaurants before their doors are open each day with sales during off-peak hours. Foodsby restaurant partners earn an average of $4,000 per month – average sale is $168 per Foodsby delivery, and an average of 5,000 consumers see a restaurant’s logo weekly. What’s more, Foodsby’s top 50 restaurant partners see an average $75,000 annual sales increase.
“We’re thrilled to partner with restaurants in San Diego as we expand Foodsby’s footprint across the West Coast,” says Ben Cattoor, CEO of Foodsby. “We’re working directly with San Diego restaurants to deliver what they desire most – a hungry, eager crowd of office workers. The best part of our system for restaurants is that restaurant owners and managers work with our team to set the delivery radius, menu items, number of drops on route, first drop time and cut-off time. In short, Foodsby puts restaurants in control of their office lunch delivery business.”
Apptizer Inc., become a Worldpay Integrated Payments partner and received certification for its Apptizer Advanced Kiosk offering. Worldpay integration will power seamless, highly secure, global omnichannel payment processing for the kiosk offering that is designed for large enterprises, chain stores and restaurant franchises.
Apptizer Advanced Kiosk automatically syncs data in real-time to kitchen display and public announcement systems as orders are made, creating a highly productive and seamless environment. By integrating Worldpay payment processing, friction between front- and back- of-house communications is reduced, resulting in smoother operations, quicker service times, reduced errors, increased sales and an overall better customer experience.
“We are excited to partner with one of the most respected global payments providers ― Worldpay,” said Apptizer CEO Dinesh Saparamadu. “Apptizer Advance Kiosk customers can now enjoy a seamless and highly secure user experience that is second to none.”
“We are always seeking partners like Apptizer who bring innovation to businesses and consumers,” said Gary Schofield, head of partnerships for Worldpay Global Integrated Payments and SMB e-Commerce. “Apptizer’s strong order-ahead technology, combined with Worldpay's superior security and payment processing technology, will give Apptizer Advance Kiosk customers industry leading capabilities.”
Atomic Wings Debuts in Albany
Atomic Wings enters its 30th anniversary year by opening its 20th location in Albany, N.Y. on Saturday, April 6 — its first in the Capital Region. The franchise serves all-natural, hormone-free chicken wings hand-tossed in more than 14 proprietary sauces and an array of classic American dishes in a fun, fast-casual setting.
Atomic Wings are made fresh in-house daily — never frozen — and in the authentic style of original Buffalo wings. Proprietary sauces range in heat from mild to nuclear, with flavor profiles including Jerk BBQ, Thai Chili and Garlic Parmesan. In addition to the Classic wings selection, each location features regional favorites and twists on iconic dishes. Vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free diners have terrific choices as well.
Atomic Wings Albany Franchise Owner Munir Tahir chose the Western Avenue location due to his roots in the region. "I went to college in the area, and of course, classic Buffalo Wings are an iconic New York dish. We could think of no better place to expand this New York brand than in the state capital, and so close to major universities."
CEO Zak Omar runs Atomic Wings with his brother Ray, and theirs is a uniquely American success story. Their parents came to the U.S. as refugees in 1980 when they fled Afghanistan's Soviet war. Zak's first exposure to the food industry was working alongside his father Mo's popular N.Y.C. food truck, where he served fried chicken to Wall Street workers. After graduating from Hofstra University, Zak himself worked on Wall Street as an IT specialist. While living in the Washington D.C. area, Zak was diagnosed with leukemia and returned to New York for treatment and to be closer to family. He connected with Atomic Wings Founder Adam Lippin, and purchased the company from him in 2017. What appealed to the brothers is that Atomic Wings is a true N.Y. company, created in their hometown. Ray Omar — a former ranger in the U.S. Army Special Forces — lives in Maryland and focuses on the company's Mid-Atlantic operations.
Great Vegas Festival of Beer
Motley Brews hosted its largest event to date with the ninth annual Great Vegas Festival of Beer, held at the Downtown Las Vegas Events Center on Friday and Saturday with approximately 8,000 guests in attendance over both days.
Some of the state’s top brewers, mixologists, chefs and restaurateurs competed in multiple categories in Friday’s Mad Craft Experience, touted as a “science fair for beer and food.” Local brewers and chefs experimented with unique beer and food pairings in a friendly competition, providing attendees with unlimited samples of beer creations and culinary dishes.
Mad Craft winners included:
Best Decorated Booth: Joseph James Brewing Company
Best Beer Blend: Gold & Night by Beer District Brewing
Best Beer Cocktail: Black Stones and Old Bones by Golden Tiki
Best Specialty Beer: Fauxlander by Big Dog’s Brewing Company
Best Beer Experiment: Benedict Cucumberbatch by Mason Ale Works
Best Craft IPA or Pale Ale-Infused Dish: The Waffkin by Twice Baked
Best Stout or Porter-Infused Dish: Hand-Rolled Cavatelli by Esther’s Kitchen
Best Protein Beer-Infused Dish: Hopped Raspberry Burrata Toast by Esther’s Kitchen
Best Craft Beer-Infused Vegetable Dish: I Wit You Not, Sprouts on Crack by Tacos and Beer
The Grand Tasting on Saturday featured over 100 breweries pouring more than 500 beers from around the globe. Along with the beer offerings, the Grand Tasting included a variety of high-energy, interactive experiences from sponsors including Zappos Murals and Magic, PT's Brewing Company and BLVD & MAIN Taphouse’s Center Bar, Ellis Island’s Front Yard Karaoke and Brooklyn Bowl’s Silent Disco.
The “Get Motley” VIP lounge offered views overlooking the entire festival, as well as samplings from Saint Archer Brewing Company, Beer District Brewing, Aces & Ales and Hop Valley Brewing Company. VIP chefs included Chef Jose Navarro, co-owner of Stache & Suite catering and executive chef at Trevi and Chef Geno Bernardo, executive chef at The Summit Club. Zappos created statues of a pretzel and beer can running towards each other for photo opportunities, along with a mural spelling out “BEER” with local beer labels and a staged wall for people to pose with wings made of beer stickers. A portion of the proceeds from the event benefited the Vegas Golden Knights Foundation and the Nevada Craft Brewers Association.
PourMyBeer is giving one restaurant entrepreneur the chance to open a self-pour taproom worth $1 million by giving away one of its 30-tap self-serve systems. Self-pour technology, where patrons receive an RFID card to unlock taps that dispense beer and charge by the ounce, is becoming increasingly popular as it increases beverage sales and decreases waste.
Restaurants/bars with PourMyBeer's 30 tap system are projected to make $1.1m in revenue in their first year.
Interested restaurant owners or hopeful entrepreneurs can enter at MillionDollarSelfPour.com by answering a short survey and submitting a 200 word essay on why they deserve to win. Friends & family can also nominate loved ones.