Manila-based MadEats is more than a ghost kitchen startup

·2 min read

MadEats, a Y Combinator alum, claims to be the first “‘full-stack’ delivery-only startup in the Philippines,” with their own virtual storefront, ghost kitchens and fleet of drivers. More than that, they also conceptualize and launch their own brands, making them a delivery-only restaurant group.

The company announced today it has raised $1.7 million in seed funding led by JAM Fund, Crystal Towers Capital, Starling Ventures, MAIN and Rebel Fund.

Launched in November 2020, MadEats currently has three ghost kitchens: one each in Makati, Quezon City and the City of Manila. They aim to cover more of Metro Manila’s north, and eventually open physical storefronts, too.

Before founding MadEats, CEO Mikee Villareal told TechCrunch that the team worked for some of the top restaurant groups in the Philippines, launching, managing and working on over 20 restaurant concepts. “At the beginning of the pandemic, we were asked to operationalize these restaurants to be delivery-forward due to stringent quarantine restrictions,” she said. “Dine-in concepts were heavily affected and we saw the need for our business.”

She added that ghost kitchens have a different cost structure than traditional restaurants, which gives the team freedom to create product concepts that are more delivery-friendly.

MadEats now has six brands and is expanding its portfolio: Yang Gang (Korean fried chicken); Chow Time (Chinese takeout); Fried Nice (fried rice); Dot Coffee; MadBakes (a test kitchen for desserts); and MadMakes for bulk orders, corporate packages and packed meals. The company is currently adding more brands, including smash burgers and Japanese food.

MadEatsOS, its suite of internal tools, is what makes MadEats' approach scalable. It includes an automated order routing system that makes sure orders are fulfilled at the nearest location, and analytics that show which brands and food items are performing well.

The company has its own MadEats riders and as demand for orders increases, have also worked with third-party logistics providers. It is available on third-party apps like GrabFood and Foodpanda, but Villareal said more than 50% of its orders come in through its own platform, Madeats.co.

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