EMERGING Fund

Restaurant Technology Companies Receiving Millions

Technology and the restaurant industry have become synonymous. From integrating AI to innovative solutions that enhance sustainability, it’s hard to find an industry resource without technology in its headlines. 

Some of the recent news includes restaurant technology companies raising up to $33 million and innovations designed to streamline operations. Let’s explore some of the latest ResTech companies making the front pages.

Owner.com

This comprehensive suite of digital tools helps independent restaurants create an online presence through enhanced online ordering, digital marketing, customer relationship management, website building, and a mobile app generator. In 2024, they raised $33 million in a Series B funding round. The company will use this money to create more free instructional videos and enhance its team of engineers and designers. 

As with most technology firms, they recently incorporated AI into the mix through their AI-powered email marketer. Thus far, Owner.com has raised $58.7 million. Over 2,000 restaurants currently use the technology, paying a flat monthly fee.

Bite

The kiosk ordering provider recently raised $9 million in a Series A funding round. Currently, the software is used in 1,100 restaurant locations. Bite takes customers’ orders, freeing up staff to perform more high-value tasks. Restaurants that have implemented Bite kiosks have seen an average check increase of around 15% to 20%.

The kiosk uses AI technology to suggest items based on what the customer orders and considers regional and seasonal trends. It enhances guest satisfaction by helping them purchase items that offer a better experience. Bite is using the funds to hire additional staff, satisfy demand, and develop new products.

Juicer

This dynamic pricing startup raised $5.3 million in a seed funding round in April 2024. Designed to optimize pricing, it uses historical sales data, machine learning, and AI to adjust real-time pricing. Their dynamic pricing tool can also change prices on third-party delivery apps based on the demand. It raises prices during peak periods and lowers them during slower times. 

Dynamic pricing has entered the mainstream as more restaurants look to find the balance between protecting margins and affecting traffic. With the rise in online ordering and digital menus, this technology helps restaurants navigate the fine line between customer price sensitivity and rising costs. 

While there has been consumer pushback regarding dynamic pricing, this brand believes it’s giving consumers the option to reduce their costs by choosing off-peak times or paying a modest premium by arriving when they’re busy. Juicer said the flexible pricing strategy can increase same-store sales by 5% to 10%. 

EnsembleIQ’s Top Women in Restaurant Technology 2024

At the latest MURTEC, EnsembleIQ’s Hospitality Technology announced the top women and rising stars in restaurant technology. To be considered a rising star, you must have worked in the restaurant technology sector for less than five years. The winners of the Rising Star in Restaurant Technology Awards were: 

  • KC Fox, GM of Digital Ordering at DoorDash
  • Kira Hattenbach, GM of PixelPoint, PAR Technology
  • Jen McQuown, Project Manager for Dine Brands Global, Inc.

ResTech Investments and the EMERGING Fund

At EMERGING, we’re excited to be a part of this continuing trend through the EMERGING Fund. Recently, we announced the addition of about 30 new investors and limited partners, bringing the total to 70 of the most prominent entrepreneurs in the field. In addition to offering capital investments, these investors serve as mentors, supporting startups in the restaurant technology sector as well as eatertainment and restaurant concepts. 

Some of the technology concepts in EMERGING Fund’s portfolio include: 

1Huddle: This concept uses mobile games to train restaurant employees, enhancing employees’ skills and engagement.  

Botrista:  The Botrista drinkbot creates premium craft teas, energy drinks, lemonades, high-quality coffees, and more in under 20 seconds. 

Overproof: This business intelligence company gives wine, beer, and spirit brands access to data, insights, and tools to help build their business and create winning strategies.  

Tablz: The Tablz platform works with a restaurant’s reservation system, enabling guests to pick out their favorite table, increasing revenue while enhancing the guest experience. 

To learn more about the Fund or to schedule a discovery call, contact Dave Bagley at the EMERGING Fund.

 

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