Making the Great Idea of Restaurant Delivery a Thriving Business Since 1997!
How We Got Here...
Before Restaurant Delivery
Our founder, Mike Handy has been at the top of the RDS industry since 1997, but before that he was already an expert in the food delivery business. In the late 1980’s Mike worked for a large corporate catering company in Dallas, Texas as the General Manager, and was directly responsible for doubling its growth from $2 million to over $4 million per year in sales. Mike moved to Orlando Florida in 1991 to start his own catering company – Delectable Edibles – and it soon became one of the largest in Orlando prior to its sale. Mr. Handy had positioned himself – and was at that time being recruited – as a nationally recognized food service consultant.
Takeout Taxi, the Nations First and Largest RDS Franchise
Mike was hired as a consultant to manage Takeout Taxi’s three corporate stores; to research, develop, and implement best practices into their then 50 national franchises. After Mike’s consulting contract ended, he immediately seized the opportunity to launch his own restaurant delivery service (OrderUp.com) in Orlando, Florida. He signed up 82 restaurants for delivery in a four month period at an average 30% commission.
By implementing all of the RDS best practices that he learned and developed at TOT, and avoiding all of the mistakes made by the failed delivery services that he visited, his first RDS grew quickly, tracking almost $2 million in sales his first year in business. Due to its immediate success, OrderUp.com was a target for acquisition and purchased by a larger Dot Com in only it’s second year.
Restaurant Delivery USA
After staying out of the RDS industry for a few years, Mike was ushered back in due to the popularity of an article in Entrepreneurs “Small Business Opportunities” magazine about how he started and grew OrderUp.com. Mike assembled a team that consulted with local entrepreneurs and launched 84 restaurant delivery services in the US, UK, Australia, Canada, Guam, Japan, China and New Zealand. The clients that diligently followed the RDUSA business model experienced enormous success, and are still operating successfully today.
Many clients asked us to franchise our concept early on, but our thoughts were that we did not want to franchise when we had a model that “would work”. Instead, what we wanted was both the freedom to develop a system that we felt was a great call for not just entrepreneurs, but to their communities, and only franchise when we had a model that “could not fail”. In 2009, RDUSA joined forces with an existing franchise system owned by Endurance Media that had managed over 300 franchises for the past 30 years. With their help and experience coupled with our extensive knowledge, we were able to begin franchising our model within 6 months.
In 2010 with Mike at the helm, they implemented the model, and sold over 30 GoWaiter franchises in 3 years becoming the most successful RDS Franchise in existence over the same period. The GoWaiter.com brand tracked over $12 million in sales during 2012 alone, delivering to online customers from nearly 1,000 of America’s favorite restaurants. In late 2013 however, an investor decided to push the company in a new direction, change the name and business model, and Mike ultimately sold his shares to the investor and resigned.
Current RDS Industry
Today’s industry is different. Technology has advanced to the point that processing orders and dispatching drivers is much more efficient, allowing a single service to account for – literally – hundreds of orders per day. Consumer demand is at an all time high, partially due to a better economy but primarily because of the simple fact that people are not preparing their own meals as much, yet wanting to spend more time at home with their families. Plus, there is a high demand for lunch time catering from restaurants to businesses without those ‘catering prices’. And considering recently forecasted trends in the hotel industry to eventually relinquish the food service realm altogether, our room service marketing demand is increasing phenomenally. In a nutshell, the industry is healthy and certainly growing, so if you’ve ever thought that food delivery was a great idea, it really is, and RDUSA can help you turn that great idea into a successful, highly profitable business right in your hometown.
What You Absolutely Need to Know
The bad news is that some very large companies (Grubhub, Seamless, Delivery.com, and most recently Amazon) have all recognized this industry as having huge potential, so are now gobbling up some of the larger cities’ RDS services, rolling them into one dominant force. If they continue, it will have the same effect as larger franchised restaurants have had by taking most of the clients from local Mom and Pop restaurants because they can’t compete with their marketing and technology. In addition, more and more entrepreneurs with more guts than knowledge are trying to start their own RDSs without any previous experience or professional guidance, and falling flat on their faces. What’s more, these failures only create more problems for legitimately-run RDSs; restaurants stop trusting us – because of ‘them’ – and end up not wanting to partner with any RDS via relinquishing commissions and/or marketing fees, leaving them with no restaurants, no profit – thus no profitability – and eventually no business.
The Good News
The good news is that we have proven a system and business model that not only works, but cannot fail, and can certainly work for you in just about any town. From larger metropolitan areas to college towns, industrial or business areas, tourist spots, even small town suburbia, etc… We have personally helped clients just like you set up in all types of markets, and experienced a great deal of success everywhere. Of course the RDUSA model must be tweaked for each situation, especially marketing, but with our simply-followed system, it works phenomenally.
Even Better News
Even better news that even with competition like Uber-Eats, GrubHub and the other giants all fighting it out in the major cities like LA, New York, Chicago, Miami, etc... there are hundreds of cities and areas with 20,000 to 60,000 deliverable addresses that are just waiting for a reliable restaurant delivery service to open up and service them. Most restaurants are familiar with our service and find value in what we do, so signing them up with a profitable agreement is not as challenging as in the past. Marketing is becoming less expensive and when used properly Social Media can boost sales in a community more cost effectively than any other marketing form to date. Overhead for our type of business has gone down over the years because we don't need a large call center with an expensive phone system, and sometimes it's even possible to run a successful growing RDS business out of your home. The BEST NEWS is that we are here to help, and we know what we are doing. If you are thinking about starting you own service, please contact us now and set up an initial consultation with our CEO, Mike Handy.