Ben Thompson: “Do you fancy a takeaway? It might only be early where we are, but you can have it delivered of course. Apps, technology mean that we can do all that pretty easily.”
Sally Bundock: “The global takeaway delivery market will be worth a whopping $132tn by 2020.”
Ben: “Yeah, it’s been through a pretty tumultuous change though as disruptors like Just Eat, Uber Eats, China’s giant ele.me and Deliveroo, to mention a few, have moved onto digital platforms.”
Sally: “But now these disruptors themselves are facing disruption. Preoday helps restaurants, food outlets, theatres, other kinds of entertainment venues, bypass the large cut taken by these ordering platforms and gives them access to customer data. We have got the Chief Executive of Preoday, Nick Hucker, with us, a digital ordering platform as we have explained. We sort of explained how you work, we’re describing you as a disruptor of the disruptors. Just put a bit more flesh on the bone there?”
Nick: “We are is a white-label digital ordering platform. What that means is we give an organisation an app and web ordering, and very simply, we don’t penalise them for the number of orders that they take. We don’t take a margin cut on every single order that you as a consumer make.”
Sally: “But also the consumer doesn’t know who you are. So for example, what you were explaining to me, which helped me quite a bit, if I went to the Opera House for example and I wanted a drink at half-time, I go to the Opera House app, order it in advance, it would all happen for me and I wouldn’t even know who Preoday is.”
Nick: “Correct. I mean the big part of our business is the fact that our brand doesn’t sit between the business and the consumer. We believe that’s their brand, they own it and they have the right to put it in front of the consumer. We simply enable them to get their brand there through digital means and open up new revenue streams. It’s very straightforward really, from that perspective.”
Ben: “What’s interesting about the likes of things like Uber Eats and Deliveroo is that you can log on to the app and whatever takes your fancy, you have a whole range of stuff, be it Chinese, Italian, whatever. Does your model not rely on you knowing that specific brand? So you say, you know, that shop that’s on the high street, ten minutes away, I want to order from that one. So actually you don’t have the choice, you have to go with a specific brand that you already know about.”
Nick: “You do, but in our research, 70% of the respondents basically stated that they like to go with a brand that they trust and they know and that they didn’t want to pay a fee to an aggregator. So they felt comfortable [saying], I go to a particular restaurant every Friday, therefore I would like to transact with that organisation and know that the money I’m paying is going to that organisation and not a third party.”
Ben: “Does a restaurant not say to you [that] being on the likes of Deliveroo or Uber Eats opens them up to a whole new market of people, who would never come across them otherwise?”
Nick: “Potentially, but from the perspective of the fact that we’re giving those organisations their own data they can market to other individuals who can come on to that app and the fact that they’re rewarding you for liking their brand, consuming through their brand and then they’re not passing on that fee to you.”
Sally: “How do you make money?”
Nick: “We’re a platform, so a simple monthly subscription charge whether you take £1 or £22 million, we don’t care, you just simply sign up.”
Sally: “And when you say you, you mean the client, which could be a theatre, so the customer doesn’t pay anything for this.”
Nick: “Correct, the customer sees no charge whatsoever and the venue pays a flat monthly fee with no hidden costs and no margin calls.
Ben: “What is so useful for a lot of firms now of course is the data that this sort of platform provides, isn’t it? It tells you a lot about habits and spending and all that sort of stuff. How useful is that to small firms? We were discussing that in the office this morning. It’s great if you’re a big organisation and you’ve got someone who can use this data, analyse it, put it to good use in terms of you know, targeted marketing or adverts, that sort of thing. How good is that if you’re a small café? What can you do with that data?”
Nick: “Well I think quite simply, you can identify the fact that Nick comes into my café every Friday and that actually [there is marketing/loyalty potential] if I offer him another coffee. This is not a huge leap for a restaurant or café owner to make but, they have that right, that is their data, that is their client, why should that data be owned by someone else? Number one. Number two, [they can send] a very simple push notification through the app to say, ‘Nick, wouldn’t you like another coffee on Friday?’”
Ben: “And that works?”
Nick: “It does work.”
Ben: “That is enough to get someone back in for that extra coffee?”
Nick: “Yeah, I think so. We work with a fish and chip company called Churchill’s and what they do is they have moved away from the aggregators and they are seeing 20% of their annual sales revenue coming through the app. And the average ticket size is nearly 80% bigger than the people coming in to order and take away…They can incentivise [customers] to come in and, say, have another portion of chips, or fish and chips and to drive business volume through.”
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