When one meals supply startup fails, one other will get funded.

Chowbus, an Asian meals ordering platform headquartered in Chicago, has introduced in a $four million “seed” funding led by Greycroft Companions and FJ Labs, with participation from Hyde Park Angels and Fika Ventures. The startup, conscious of the challenges that plague startups on this area, says providing unique entry to eating places and eliminating service charges units it other than big-name rivals like Uber Eats, Grubhub, DoorDash and Postmates.

The Chowbus platform focuses on meals somewhat than eating places. Whereas scrolling by means of the cellular app, a consumer is linked to varied impartial eating places relying on what specific dish they’re in search of. Chowbus says solely a small portion of the eating places on its platform, 15 %, are additionally accessible on Grubhub and Uber Eats. 

The app is at present accessible in Chicago, Boston, New York Metropolis, Philadelphia, Champaign, Ailing. and Lansing, Mich. With the brand new funding, which brings Chowbus’ whole raised to only over $5 million, the startup will launch in as much as 20 extra markets. Finally, Chowbus says it would increase into different cuisines, too, starting with Mexican and Italian. 

Chowbus was based in 2016 by chief govt officer Linxin Wen and chief expertise officer Suyu Zhang.

“After I first got here to the U.S. 5 years in the past, I discovered most eating places I actually appreciated [weren’t] on Grubhub nor different main supply platforms and the supply charges had been fairly excessive,” Wen informed TechCrunch. “So I believed, perhaps I can construct a platform to assist these eating places,”

TechCrunch chatted with Wen and Zhang on Tuesday, the day after Munchery introduced it was shutting down its ready meal supply enterprise. Naturally, I requested the founders what made them assume Chowbus can survive in an already crowded market, dominated by the likes of Uber.

“The central kitchen mannequin doesn’t work; the associated fee is just too excessive,” Zhang stated, referring to Munchery’s enterprise mannequin, which ready meals for its meal service in-house somewhat than sourcing by means of native eating places.

“We don’t personal the kitchen or the chef, we simply benefit from the sources and assist eating places earn more money,” Wen added. “The meals supply area is basically large and rising so fast.”


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