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The world stooped into convenience mode in 2020 and food delivery was the beneficiary. Takeout and delivery as a percentage of restaurant sales has skyrocketed as a result of COVID-19 and that trend continues to grow. COVID catalyzed the trend to the point that since February, 43% of total sales volume for restaurants was through online ordering. How did people receive these orders though? Did they meet the driver for an awkward hand-off? Did the driver leave it outside their door? Did they come through the building to reach the orderer?

How many times has it happened to you that you ordered Doordash or UberEats an hour ago and you’ve virtually forgotten about it and begun something important? You’re mid zoom meeting with your boss or you’re on an important call with your health insurance company…You get that call that your food delivery person is downstairs waiting by the door, fumbling with your entryway. Your boss can wait, enchiladas have arrived…NOT! Wouldn’t it be a much more efficient and desirable outcome to have that food neatly delivered and slid into an insulated sleeve in your apartment or office building’s common area for retrieval at your convenience? Imagine that! You get a text or notification that your food is in pod #4. You finish up your virtual meeting and you head downstairs. You use your iPhone SMS text code or QR code to scan and pop open the cubby where your food is awaiting your arrival, still steamy hot and fresh. Welcome to Minnow!

Group Delivery makes sense but delivering your $12 tacos in isolation does not!

The convenience economy is learning how to make the unit economics of food delivery profitable. Route optimization in high-density cities can create for a very profitable afternoon of food delivery but delivering one order of burger and fries to your suburban office building doesn’t quite pencil in isolation. Considering the stranglehold of the food delivery apps, the greatest tax is levied on the restaurants. Every time a diner places an order through the delivery apps, the restaurant is charged a 20-30% commission. With restaurants already operating at extremely thin margins, this poses a huge challenge to restaurateurs. One way to improve these mom & pop restaurants’ margins is to help them increase their group ordering and bulk delivery. DoorDash launched group ordering in 2017 and UberEats announced group ordering last summer. How they choose to deliver on these promises in the COVID-era and beyond is still in progress. Partnering with businesses like Minnow might be the way forward. Whether through partnerships with the delivery platforms or for direct restaurant enablement, Minnow’s hardware and software solution can help create group ordering systems seamlessly for office, residential, medical or industrial buildings and tenants.

Retail’s New Store Front

Call it the new “drive-by” pickup solution, but curbside just got a whole lot easier. You’re on the way to the beach, you swing by and pick up your burgers and right there, built into the store front, you have an incubated cubby to retrieve those delicious juicy burgers; DONE, you’re on your way. No interacting with an over-worked hostess who has to attend to diners and incoming orders. No waiting in line to ask where your order is. No payments transacted in person. All done through MINNOW.

Minnow’s use cases are endless, and that’s what has LPC Ventures so excited about this partnership and investment. As we navigate these new territories of COVID life, we believe solutions that reduce friction points for food delivery will thrive in every environment in which you live, work or play. We’re getting in at the ground level to help the Minnow team build the amazon locker of food and help realize its full potential in the real estate community.

Reach out today to learn more about Minnow (Minnowpod.com)!

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