The mobile point-of-sale market is notoriously crowded, with up-and-coming players competing against more legacy companies.
So while point-of-sale (POS) would appear to be vertical agnostic, success tends to go those who specialize in a particular industry. And when you think of mobile POS, food service is ideally poised for innovation, with many vendors whose best previous option had been to institute a “cash only” policy pushing for technological solutions. Food trucks, for example.
TouchBistro, the Toronto-based makers of food service point-of-sale technology, has closed a new $1.5 million round of funding, with contributions from Walden Venture Capital and Kensington Capital Partners, complementing the total seed round, already contributed to by Relay Ventures, to a total of $6 million.
“We are seeing tremendous momentum in this market, reinforced by some very encouraging market research,” says CEO Alex Barrotti. “This translates into a huge opportunity for TouchBistro.”
TouchBistro’s iPad app became a top-grossing download in the iTunes store shortly after its debut two years ago. Its software processed more than $500 million worth of transactions in 2013, for more than 1,000 clients including restaurants, food trucks, and other food service locations where mobile point-of-sale not only makes sense, but is frequently the main option.
A recent hospitality industry survey reported that 69.6% of food vendors desired a shift to mobile POS, from their old static POS terminals, and that 62.5% wanted the enablement of payment processing options.
Aside from just processing payments, servers can take customer orders using an iPad and instantly transmit the customer’s order to the kitchen. Payment processing allows the vendor to accept just about any form of customer payment, including debit, credit, gift card and mobile.
The new funding will no doubt help the company achieve its stated objective of doubling its existing 2,000-strong customer base this year. “We are already well on our way to achieving the lofty goals we’ve set for the year,” says Barrotti. “In January we opened our New York City office. We also achieved a 34% increase over our previous record of new customer signups in a given month.”
With offices already in Toronto and New York, TouchBistro has plans for expansion to San Francisco, a legendarily picky food town, in 2014.