The Belgian firm with Canadian roots now has a $1.4 billion valuation.
Amid the growth of third-party food delivery apps during the pandemic, Deliverect has raised $150 million USD in Series D funding to help restaurants navigate an increasingly complex environment.
OMERS Ventures, which led Deliverect’s 2020 Series B round, reinvested as part of the startup’s all-equity, “majority primary” Series D financing, which closed earlier this month. The round was led by Coatue Management LLC and Alkeon Capital Management, and supported by OMERS, DST Global, Redpoint Ventures, Newion, and Smartfin. The fresh capital brings Deliverect’s total funding to $240 million, and lends the company a valuation of over $1.4 billion USD.
Deliverect aims to become “the backbone of digital foods.”
OMERS Ventures Managing Partner Jambu Palaniappan told BetaKit that Deliverect has a “massive macro opportunity” and “a really compelling vision.”
Palaniappan, who is based in the United Kingdom and sits on Deliverect’s board of directors, said that OMERS invested in Deliverect for two main reasons: the firm saw “a complicated and challenging delivery world for restaurants,” and an opportunity to help these restaurants manage orders across different platforms.
“The structural shift to e-commerce, online ordering, and delivery—those tailwinds existed before the pandemic, they’ve only accelerated, and I don’t think they’re going away,” said Palaniappan.
The round follows a period of significant growth for the Belgian firm, which has strong Canadian connections and presence. Deliverect processed one and a half million orders per week in 2021 alone, as demand for online ordering platforms skyrocketed during COVID-19.
Founded in 2018 by a group of ex-Lightspeed leaders, Deliverect offers a software platform that automates restaurants’ online order flow, integrating delivery, table app, and takeout requests from services like Uber Eats and Grubhub into restaurants’ existing POS or delivery manager applications.
Armed with fresh funding, Deliverect plans to build on its recent growth by expanding its product portfolio, as the firm looks to scale to serve “hundreds of thousands of establishments,” including not just restaurants—where it got its start—but also convenience and grocery stores.
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Deliverect co-founder and CEO Zhong Xu told BetaKit that Deliverect aims to become the “backbone of digital foods,” adding that the startup wants to build out the infrastructure to “to power 100,000 restaurants.”
Xu attributed some of the startup’s recent growth to the diversity of its customer base. “I think what has made us grow very quickly is that we don’t only play in the segment of very large enterprise restaurants,” he said. “We help a lot of small and medium restaurants … [and] besides even the restaurant space we are also quite strong in quick commerce.”
Palaniappan said he sees “a lot” of opportunity for Deliverect in capturing a larger slice of the grocery and consumer-packaged goods markets.
Deliverect is part of an OMERS Ventures portfolio that includes fellow restaurant software startup TouchBistro, which is based in Toronto, matching up with the firm’s focus on foodtech firms.
Deliverect’s clients range from small, independent restaurants to large global chains like KFC, Chipotle, Taco Bell, and Burger King. The startup serves over 20,000 locations across 30 markets, and recently surpassed 100 million total orders processed to date.
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The Belgian-founded startup has “a strong connection with Canada,” where it launched in spring 2020 and has since partnered with Digital Main Street. For one, the company’s founding team includes a group of former Lightspeed leaders, like Canadian co-founder and CRO Jerome Laredo.
Deliverect has also invested heavily in the country: today, over a fifth of Deliverect’s total employees—85 members of the firm’s 380-person team—are based in Canada.
Many of these workers are based in Toronto, which serves as the startup’s “hub for the Americas.” Deliverect currently has teams dedicated to product development, marketing, partnerships, sales, and customer success support in the city.
Noah Hayes, Deliverect’s general manager of United States and Canada, told BetaKit that the startup has chosen to invest in Toronto for a few reasons, including the region’s reputation as “an amazing centre for tech talent,” strong support ecosystem, and OMERS’ backing, adding that the move also “made sense” from a product and partnerships perspective.
With its Series D capital, the Belgian startup aims to double its Canadian headcount and increase its overall ranks to around 600 by the end of 2022.
Feature image courtesy of Deliverect