UK-based Slerp, an ecommerce platform for hospitality, has raised a total of $10 million in funding. The investors included Eight Roads Ventures, Jigsaw VC and TrueSight Ventures.
21st May, London: Slerp, the UK’s leading ecommerce partner for premium restaurants and hospitality brands, has closed Seed and Series A rounds in quick succession, raising a total of $10m this year. Slerp is a platform that enables its partners to sell direct to customers via the website and social channels. The rounds have been led by Eight Roads Ventures, Jigsaw VC and supported by TrueSight Ventures, Aldea Ventures, as well as high-profile Angels including Rumi Verjee, founder of Dominos UK & The Rumi Foundation. The investment will be used to further build out the platform and expand the team, across all functions, gearing up for international expansion in Europe. Slerp has seen 500%+ percent growth this year compared to the same period last year. The investment places the Company in pole position to capitalise on the growth of home dining and the delivery sector, projected to grow from £3.7 billion in 2020 to £12.6 billion in 2024”.
Slerp provides a customisable e-commerce solution for hospitality brands, enabling them to transact with customers directly from their own websites, whilst controlling their brand image, customer data and settings. Until recently, the main option for the sector has been marketplace or aggregator delivery services who charge high commission and focus on on-demand orders. Slerp takes just 7.5% in fees and provides a suite of other wrap around services, such as digital marketing and management of the complete ecommerce process for all order types. This enables partners to accept direct orders, manage production planning and connect to delivery services of their choice (or deliver themselves). Brands who use the platform include Jose Pizzaro, The Savoy, Galvin Restaurants, Ottolenghi, JKS Restaurants and Gaucho.
“Slerp provides a very different service to marketplaces in this sector. We are powering the next evolution of online ordering by becoming a digital business partner to brands, enabling them to have a direct relationship with their customers and significantly more control of their online channel. Because our roots are as food brand owners and establishment operators, we have purposefully listened to our peers to create a platform solution that provides significantly more control compared to marketplaces, and contributes to both the top and bottom line for businesses. It’s a very exciting time for the sector as it trends towards being more omnichannel and digitally enabled,” says founder, JP Then.
Davor Hebel, Head of Eight Roads Ventures Europe commented, “Slerp has enabled hospitality businesses who have been hard hit during the pandemic to launch an online offering quickly and to continue serving customers through successive lockdowns. As the economy re-opens, these businesses have an established new business line which will strengthen them for the long-term and allow them to reach a much broader customer base. We have been very impressed by the rapid growth that Slerp has achieved over the last year. We are thrilled to partner with JP and the team as Slerp looks to power hospitality ecommerce across Europe.”
Slerp has enabled brands to offer local on-demand ordering, as well as nationwide delivery, supporting industry trends that show greater online penetration of the hospitality industry in the last year. Recent research by Slerp and KAM Media has also shown that demand for ‘dine at home’ solutions from restaurants remain very high, with 9 out of 10 people wanting brands to continue to offer a direct online ordering solution.
Chris Galvin at the Michelin starred Galvin Restaurants adds, “Slerp has enabled us to connect directly with thousands of new customers and is the best in class of it’s type. The platform has allowed us to deliver the Galvin experience across the country. We see it as an essential revenue stream, and are already seeing customers using at home and in-restaurant services, for key occasion at home. Though we have paused as we reopen our sites, we have big plans for Galvin at home.”
Continues Alba Jimenez, from Savoy and the Fairmont Group “At-home hospitality is definitely here to stay. Moving forward, the creativity that operators have exhibited by forging their online offering will be essential to stand out and drive opportunity. This is something very exciting and will be a pillar for our F&B strategy in the future.”
JP adds, “essentially the market has moved to a ‘Two Table option’ – the table at home is just as important for the sector to acknowledge as well as table in-premise. Those that are willing to listen to their customers have a great opportunity to evolve their businesses to capture a wider audience and add significant value to their propositions.”
The research also showed that 11.5 million UK adults (22%) have ordered a ‘cook at home’ meal box in the last 12 months, with an even larger proportion (40%) intending to purchase in the future. 62% want their favourite restaurant brands to start selling ‘cook at home’ meal boxes nationwide.
Slerp is headquartered in Shoreditch, London and currently has a team of 40 people. The company has processed over 200,000 transactions in the last 6 months alone.
JP Then is a Co-founder of Crosstown, an omni-channel brand established in 2014, specialising in handmade doughnuts, cookies and ice cream. JP launched Slerp to market at the end of 2019 after three years of building the platform and utilising his knowledge within the sector and using Crosstown as a test-bed. JP was named by Bumble as one of the top 50 people shaping London. He was born in Edinburgh, Scotland, grew up in Brisbane, Australia and has lived in London for 11 years.
About Eight Roads Ventures
Eight Roads Ventures is a global venture capital firm that helps entrepreneurs scale. Eight Roads has $6bn AUM, 250 portfolio companies and 50 years of venture investing experience with portfolio companies such as Alibaba, AppsFlyer, Compte Nickel, Cúram, Funnel.io, Future Advisor, Flywire, Gloat, HiBoB, InnoGames, Icertis, iPipeline, Kensho, Letgo, MADE.com, Neo4j, Nuance, Ping Identity, Prosper, Paidy, Red Points, Spendesk, Toast, Treatwell, Otrium, Wallapop and Xoom.