- Sharebite is a food-delivery service founded by two former investment bankers.
- The company raised a $15 million Series A, and has big plans to expand its footprint.
- Firms like Credit Suisse and Sullivan & Cromwell use the service to get food delivered to offices.
- See more stories on Insider’s business page.
Few things on Wall Street elicit as much enthusiasm as dealmaking. But having a good meal might be one of them.
And, as offices reopen, financial-services companies are deliberating how to safely coordinate food deliveries in a time with increased demand for hygienic, contactless delivery options.
Some startups have looked to helps firms adapt to the new environment, especially given renewed interest in contactless food delivery as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
Sharebite, a startup cofounded by two former bankers, is one company aiming to transform and improve how Wall Street firms facilitate food delivery at the office. The company announced a $15 million Series A on Tuesday, which it plans to use to expand its footprint in New York and nationwide.
The startup has been tapped by about 30 companies in law and financial services, cofounders Dilip Rao and Mohsin Memon told Insider. Current Sharebite customers include Credit Suisse, Neuberger Berman, and white-shoe law firms Sullivan & Cromwell and Cravath, Swaine & Moore, among others.
Rao said the days of large, communal catered trays of food may be behind Wall Street as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
“People lining up for plates, it’s just not hygienic,” Rao said, adding: “No one wants that anymore.”
While Rao and Mohsin, who were previously investment bankers at Credit Suisse and Bank of America, respectively, bring first-hand experience with how Wall Street lunches, they’ve now added investors who are no strangers to food service.
Sharebite’s Series A is being led by impact investor Lafayette Square, as well as the founders and former senior execs at two big names in the world of meal delivery: Seamless and Delivery Hero.
Seamless cofounders Paul Appelbaum and Todd Arky along with Lukasz Gadowski, a cofounder of German-based Delivery Hero, are among the investors leading the round.
Other firms participating in the Series A include Essential Capital, Liberty Capital Ventures, Percy Capital, Reign Ventures, River Park Ventures, and London Technology Club.
Prior to this fundraise, Sharebite had raised seed capital from a group of angel investors, business people, and institutions such as Columbia University’s Lang Fund, a company representative told Insider.
Sharebite is eyeing expansion with the funds from its Series A
Key to Sharebite’s plans for growth is rolling out a broader network of Sharebite Stations, where food is dropped off at major offices for employees to pick up individually.
Here’s how it works: First, employees at the companies that utilize Sharebite upload their lunch or meal orders individually on the Sharebite platform.
When they’re delivered to the office, they come in large batches, and are left at designated Sharebite Stations where employees can retrieve their meals themselves.
One added benefit of the service is that it is intended to alleviate the burden on restaurants, while ensuring that companies using the Sharebite system can get their orders in.
By encouraging employees to upload their orders before the lunch or dinner rush strikes, Sharebite is able to give local restaurant kitchens a leg up on being able to turn orders around with ample time before regular foot traffic starts coming in the door.
And its seen increased interest from financial firms eager to get onto the system in recent months as the return-to-office movement gets into full swing, Rao and Memon said. Indeed, Sharebite’s contractual business has grown by 400% during the pandemic, the company said.
It also comes as employees make clear they’re over brown-bagging it, and want their companies to pay for lunch as they transition back to work. Some firms are coming around to the idea, the cofounders said.
They’ve noticed that several companies are covering the cost of employees’ lunch (in addition to comping late, after-hours dinners, which has been a longstanding courtesy offered by many banks), in an effort to encourage them to return to the office.
Going forward, the company is committed to expanding its footprint, Rao and Memon said, and is aiming to chip away at the market share of longstanding rival Seamless.
“Our goal is: If you have an office, and you’re coming back to the office, you should have a Sharebite Station,” Memon said.
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