Just as electronic payments have evolved in the last few decades, so have the software applications they link with. It's common for merchants to now use frontline business applications that simplify the entire merchant-to-customer experience while seamlessly incorporating the payment acceptance process.
Such is the case with Los Angeles-based Ordermark. A restaurant technology service provider, Ordermark provides a suite of restaurant-enabling applications that includes an online ordering platform and a virtual kitchen service offered by Ordermark's sister entity Nextbite. According to a company statement, the initial concept for Ordermark's online ordering platform was born in the kitchen of the world-famous Canter's Deli in Los Angeles. Founded by Alex Canter, a fourth-generation restaurateur, the Ordermark idea was forged from a desire to simplify the management of inbound mobile food orders at restaurants.
"Being in the kitchen at Canter's and wanting to take charge of the to-go and delivery side of the business, Alex realized how tough it was to be on as many ordering services as they wanted to be," said Geoff Madding, CEO of Nextbite. "All of them were managed on different tablets, and after experiencing the pain, Alex thought there might be a business opportunity." Ordermark launched in January 2017 under the guidance of four founders including Canter, Paul Allen, Jay Fuhr, and Michael Jacobs. Today, the company employs 66 people on the Ordermark side, with another 23 serving the Nextbite subsidiary.
The solution Canter developed is an integrated order management platform where all inbound mobile orders are aggregated and handled concurrently through a single dashboard, tablet and printer. "Fast forward, and Ordermark created the technology that enabled all those different companies and delivery apps to integrate with the Ordermark platform so it could be used by a restaurant on a single tablet with a single printer in your kitchen," Madding said. "It's really cool from a technology perspective."
The Ordermark application seamlessly integrates with the restaurant's POS software, menus and multiple third-party marketplaces. The platform has more than 40 online ordering integrations. Customers include a mix of small, single-location restaurants and many of the world's top restaurant chains like Buffalo Wild Wings, Papa John's, Popeyes, Which Wich and Yogurtland.
Headquartered in Denver, Nextbite incorporated in December 2018. According to Madding, its purpose is to "continue to help restaurants expand revenues and boost sales by enabling them to function in the ghost-kitchen space and add virtual concepts, just like adding multiple channels of delivery."
Madding joined the Nextbite team in July 2019 and helped the company build a test kitchen. "We realized by talking to people early on—and prior to COVID—that off-premises ordering was growing faster than on-premises ordering," Madding stated. "The market was predicted to grow from 35 billion to 365 billion in the next 10 years, and that was later revised to 1 trillion post COVID."
Nextbite creates delivery-only restaurant concepts with high-quality, chef-inspired menus, all available through delivery apps, Madding pointed out. These restaurant concepts are rooted in data analytics and research but operate without much of the overhead and expense typically associated with traditional brick-and-mortar restaurants, he added.
The solution was designed to be a turnkey virtual restaurant. "Fulfillment partners opt in and are vetted as a good fit," Madding said. "We will pay for online delivery, marketing, brand development, training, recipes, ingredients and delivery apps under the contract—you just have to make the food."
"You can just add Nextbite via the Ordermark tablet," Madding. "This is the power of the Ordermark/Nextbite solution together."
And, integration is the name of the game for Ordermark, which has worked diligently to ensure restaurant clients won't have to uproot current billing systems. According to Madding, the goal is to maintain payment and other day-to-day operational processes, while simplifying order operations.
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