Recent Developments in Restaurant Tech Vendors and Digital Platforms

September 20, 2021

photo courtesy of National Computer Corporation

Here are several new developments in the restaurant technology industry that took place in the last month, showing just how powerful foodservice technology has grown to become.  

1. Toast Seeks $16B IPO Valuation 

Toast, a restaurant point-of-sale and management system, is going public, and it is seeking an initial public valuation of $16 billion according to an SEC regulatory filing. Shares will be priced somewhere between $30-$33, meaning the company could potentially raise more than $717.4 million. The filing also shows that Toast’s annual revenue is around $494 million, with 118% year-over-year growth, and around 48,000 foodservice locations; Toast’s major private investors include TPG, American Express Ventures, Bessemer Venture Partners, G Squared, and Greenoaks. According to the founders of Toast – Steve Fredette, Aman Narang, and Jon Grimm – “this is only the beginning of our journey. Our goal to become the platform of choice for restaurants all over the world is broad and could take us in many directions. To build a leading technology company, we’ll invest in the long-term drivers of the restaurant industry.” 

2. Yum Brands Completes Acquisition of Dragontail 

Yum Brands Inc., a major fast-food corporation, has finally acquired Dragontail Systems, which creates AI-powered kitchen order management and delivery technologies, after announcing its intent back in May. Yum acquired Dragontail for $93.5 million for almost 24 cents/share. Dragontail’s AI allows companies to coordinate the delivery process from the moment a digital order comes in to the moment drivers are dispatched. Additionally, it gives companies the ability to integrate information with third-party delivery in order to track optimal delivery routes and combine orders in an effort to more efficiently deliver orders. According to Yum CEO David Gibbs, “a key growth driver for our business and our teams is the continued acceleration of our digital and technology strategy, including how we leverage our global scale with investments in technology initiatives that enhance the customer and employee experience, strengthen restaurant unit economics and provide a competitive advantage for our franchisees.” 

3. SpotOn Announces Another Round of Funding and Acquires Appetize

SpotOn, the payment software company, has recently announced another round of funding as well as the acquisition of Appetize. 

Funding 

Following in the steps of their $125 million Series D funding in May, SpotOn has just raised $300 million in Series E funding led by Andreessen Horowitz, which effectively raised its valuation to $3.15 billion. Other key investors include: DST Global, 01 Advisors, Dragoneer Investment Group, Franklin Templeton, and Mubadala Investment Company. 

Acquisition 

SpotOn has also announced the acquisition of Appetize, a cloud point-of-sale solution, that will allow it to expand its client base to include sports and entertainment venues, theme parks, zoos, and college campuses. Appetize will be fully integrated and will, from here on out, be known as SpotOn. According to SpotOn co-CEO, Matt Hyman, “we are combining our complementary technologies, extending our market coverage, and retaining our shared passion for great service and support for our clients. SpotOn is quickly becoming a part of everyday life for consumers across the country whenever they shop, dine, or visit a stadium or a college campus.” 

4. Clear Partners with Resy 

Following its partnership with OpenTable, Clear has just announced that it will be bringing the same services to the table in a partnership with Resy, a leading reservations company. The biometrics company will be creating a virtual vaccination card – The Health Pass – which all Resy restaurants will have access to. This will allow operators to streamline proof-of-vaccination without having to ask for paperwork or physical cards. This partnership will reportedly be free of charge through 2022. According to Clear CEO Caryn Seidman-Becker, “right now, restaurants and small businesses have enough on their plate, and we are excited to team up with Resy to give them one less thing to worry about.” 

Founded by attorneys Andreas Koutsoudakis and Michael Iakovou, KI Legal focuses on guiding companies and businesses throughout the entire legal spectrum as it relates to their business including day-to-day operations and compliance, litigation and transactional matters.

Connect with Andreas Koutsoudakis on LinkedIn.

Connect with Michael Iakovou on LinkedIn.

This information is the most up to date news available as of the date posted. Please be advised that any information posted on the KI Legal Blog or Social Channels is being supplied for informational purposes only and is subject to change at any time. For more information, and clarity surrounding your individual organization or current situation, contact a member of the KI Legal team, or fill out a new client intake form.