Nabeel Alamgir, CEO and Co-Founder
“Innovation comes from younger, scrappier companies that are willing to fight or punch their way through,” says Nabeel Alamgir, who realized this after spending years in the restaurant industry. Starting out as a busboy and eventually becoming chief marketing officer for a restaurant group, he has seen the industry up close and wanted to build a venture that helped meet unmet needs in the industry. With the rapid digitalization of the restaurant industry – further exacerbated by the pandemic pushing restaurants toward digital ordering – restaurants are struggling to hire multiple firms to handle their online ordering, design, and marketing needs. This made Alamgir find an innovative, three-in-one solution that combines the ordering, design, and marketing components under a single umbrella. The result was Lunchbox Technologies, a collection of digital ordering platforms dishing out digital solutions for brick-and-mortar restaurants, co-founded by Alamgir, where he currently serves as the CEO.
Founded in 2019, this young New York-based company is already creating waves in the food-tech scene, helping restaurants convert third-party sales into direct sales, driving up profits, and expanding their digital footprints. In a nutshell, restaurants can simply focus on their core competencies, while Lunchbox helps them with all things digital and acts as their external innovation partner.
To that end, Lunchbox has a platter full of interesting features for restaurants. Lunchbox’s ordering component comes with features like app ordering, web ordering, and catering, along with sophisticated ordering like scheduled orders and order stops. Its design component takes care of the restaurants’ digital storefront, branding, and campaign designing. Lastly, its marketing component employs push notifications, subscription model and email marketing to keep tabs on customers’ restaurant visits and their food preferences, engaging with them accordingly. “We also have a marketing team that helps restaurants with pixel tracking, where they will know exactly what’s coming in from Facebook,” adds Alamgir. In addition to helping restaurants brand themselves and launch marketing campaigns, Lunchbox also continuously trains restaurants to keep them up-to-date with its weekly feature updates.
Also on Lunchbox’s menu is Pocket Kiosk, which allows customers to place orders from the table on their smartphones, and Mini Marketplace, originally built for the Citizens Go app, which enables customers to order food from different places, brands, and cuisines in the same online cart. This feature alone has resulted in an impressive 70 percent increase in Citizens Go’s checks average. For the New York-based restaurant chain Bareburger too, Lunchbox has helped increase direct ordering by more than 50 percent, leading to doubling of sales. Furthermore, Clean Juice, the juice bar franchise, has onboarded Lunchbox’s various platforms one after another owing to encouraging sales results–starting with the app, moving on to the web, followed by subscription, and now inching toward catering–all within a matter of months.
Such positive experiences certainly make the restaurant scene an exciting one, though Alamgir doesn’t discount the challenges that come with it – especially against the backdrop of the ongoing pandemic, which has severely disrupted the restaurant industry. “But it’s rewarding to do impactful work and try to help restaurants everywhere,” he remarks, focusing on the bright side. “I know what they’re going through, and to be able to be someone that helps them is a big deal today.”
With that in mind, Lunchbox is set to add more innovative features to its platter. Plans to dive into the cloud space and invest in enterprise tech solutions for restaurant groups with thousand-plus outlets are underway, as is unveiling a robust CRM tool for the restaurant industry by the end of the year. Clearly, with such projects in the pipeline, the tables have been set for Lunchbox Technologies to dominate the food-tech scene, as Alamgir states, “We want to be seen as the company that takes the lead in food-tech.”