Dishpatch, a leading finish-at-home meal kit platform bringing the best of London’s world-beating food scene to homes across the UK, has raised a €11.6 million seed round co-led by Andreessen Horowitz and LocalGlobe.
Founded in 2020 by Peter Butler (restaurant operations expert) and James Terry (life-long digital entrepreneur), Dishpatch is the ‘antithesis of Deliveroo’. Built to complement and support restaurants, the London-based startup is on a mission to democratise access to great food; to give food lovers, wherever they may be in the country, the chance to eat a feast from a top-rated London restaurant and to provide restaurants with a scalable source of revenue.
Customers can choose from a variety of curated dishes and menus, from the likes of Angela Hartnett’s Cafe Murano and favourite Ottolenghi, as well as from neighbourhood treasures, Roti King, and Gunpowder. Soho staple Andrew Edmunds, Jose Pizarro’s tapas and St. JOHN, famous for pioneering nose-to-tail eating, are also represented, alongside handpicked eateries from across the capital. Each feast can be made for two, or designed to accommodate larger groups for people looking to serve restaurant-quality food at dinner parties or family gatherings. Menus come fully-prepped for customers to finish and reheat at home.
The founding team includes former restaurant managers and marketers, as well as the brightest tech talent. Dishpatch partners only with the very best, well-respected, independent and chef-led eateries. It works with each partner restaurant to curate exclusive finish-at-home meal kits based on the establishment’s iconic menus and food styles.
Dishpatch’s meal kits are what’s known as ”finish-at-home”, meaning that top class restaurant food is delivered to the customer’s door, with clear instructions on heating, finishing and presenting. Unlike delivery services like Deliveroo, or DIY meal kits like Gousto or Hello Fresh, customers aren’t handed a box of lukewarm dishes from the back of a scooter, nor are they given the raw ingredients to prep for hours.
Instead, each individual restaurant carries out all of the food preparation before handing it over to Dishpatch’s fulfilment team who package the boxes, before dispatching them to addresses across the UK every Friday.
Dishpatch was initially founded to help restaurants when the first lockdown hit, by allowing eateries a way to reach new and existing customers. Although restaurants are re-opening, many are restricted in the number of tables they have so Dishpatch gives them a new, wider customer base and an additional revenue stream.
Since launch, Dishpatch has signed up 25 restaurants and the service has a waiting list of eateries looking to partner with the end-to-end tech and operations platform. In just 10 months, Dishpatch has delivered more than 75,000 meals, achieving millions worth of revenue for restaurants that were forced to close. Before partnering with Dishpatch, 95% of the restaurants on the platform had never delivered food before and had no infrastructure to meet the demand seen during lockdown.
Peter Butler, CEO and co-founder, said: “Dining at home should be flavourful, meaningful, and exciting, a departure from the everyday and generic takeaway. Dishpatch creates an entirely new and profitable revenue stream for restaurants, while enabling access to high quality menus no matter where you live. We’re giving the best chefs bigger tables, hand selecting both award-winners and hidden gems yet to be discovered.”
Angela Hartnett, founder of Cafe Murano, commented: “Launching Cafe Murano with Dishpatch kept us going through the pandemic, generating a significant source of revenue enabling us to keep our chefs in the kitchen and our restaurant team busy. We’ve been amazed by the feedback we’ve had from customers across the country and although our restaurants are now open, finish-at-home meal kits are part of our long term plans. Working with Dishpatch is crucial to help us grow this part of our business.”
More than 50% of at-home diners are repeat customers, and more than 70% of orders are made more than a week in advance. Dishpatch is also proving to be a popular way for diners to discover new restaurants, with 75% of customers ordering kits from restaurants that they have never eaten at before.
The new million seed round also saw participation from Stride, Entree Capital and Entrepreneur First as well as notable angels including Aron Gelbard (Co-Founder and CEO at Bloom & Wild), Mandeep Singh (Co-founder and Founding CEO at Trouva), Songkick’s co-founder Ian Hogarth, Farewill’s co-founder Dan Garrett, and Tracey Dorée, the founder of Llustre and Kindred Capital.
Jeff Jordan, Managing Partner at Andreessen Horowitz said: “COVID has been a huge catalyst for innovation and Dishpatch has perfectly captured this with the development of its finish-at-home meal kit platform. It offers restaurants an additional revenue stream, opening their addressable market to every consumer in the country. And it offers diners a large and growing selection of high quality, convenient meals from some of the best restaurants in the country. We’re thrilled to be joining them on this journey as they build the future of at-home dining.”
The funding will be used to enable a further 20 restaurants to join the platform by the end of this year, increasing the choice for customers. At the same time, Dishpatch will increase its team across marketing, tech (including platform development as well as packaging technologists), distribution and customer service.