By Marcella McCarthy
A program to help struggling local restaurants scale their delivery businesses kicks off today, and one of South Florida’s fastest-growing tech companies is behind it.
Miami-based REEF Technology and its subsidiary REEF Neighborhood Kitchens announced Thursday that applications for its its NBRHD Restaurant Development Program are open. The $1 million program provides a $10,000 marketing campaign and other services through the platform for REEF’s Neighborhood Kitchens, a national delivery-only network of 100+ neighborhood kitchens around the U.S. The NBRHD Restaurant Development Program launches in Miami today and will scale to other selected markets, REEF said.
“Upwards of 100 local restaurants can benefit from this by joining our Kitchens platform and kickstarting or expanding their delivery business boosted by our marketing, culinary and operational support,” said Ari Ojalvo, founder and CEO of REEF Technology, the largest operator of mobility, logistics hubs and neighborhood kitchens.
“With the challenges of this year, as many as 85% of independent restaurants could go out of business soon. Our NBRHD Restaurant Development Program is designed to help those essential local brands adapt and grow their delivery business within our Neighborhood Kitchens platform in a long-term sustainable way,” said Ojalvo, in an interview with Refresh Miami. “We believe these businesses are the backbone of the communities we live in and hope this program provides the boost they need.”
Initially, the NBRHD Restaurant Development Program is open to Miami-based restaurants with fewer than three locations. REEF encourages applications from local women and Black, Indigenous and people of color (BIPOC) owned restaurants, but this is not a mandatory criteria.
Applications will be accepted until 11:59pm on Thursday, Feb. 4, 2021, and restaurants can apply here.
Restaurant applications will be reviewed by a panel of local celebrity chefs on the strength of their culinary concept, potential for success on delivery platforms, community following and personal story.
The restaurants will receive a marketing campaign valued at $10,000; a partnership spot in REEF’s Neighborhood Kitchens platform to expand their delivery business, with services including menu development, procurement and culinary operations; and professional food photography.
“Historically, restaurants run on extremely tight profit margins and we recognize that local businesses struggle to access industry resources of this caliber. Our NBRHD Restaurant Development Program fills that gap and is engineered to help our beloved local brands adapt, sustainably grow their business and reach new customers without upfront capital costs,” said Alan Phillips, Chief Creative Officer of REEF, in a news release.
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