We’ve spent a year exploring the corporate catering industry, identifying how it works; its strengths, its weaknesses and its traditions. Today, we’re proud to share the vision we built for GoCater, a product created to regenerate an 17 billion euros industry that has fallen behind the times and drive it into tomorrow’s world.
Just one month after launch, GoCater is already enabling 100+ partners to sell their catering products to 450+ companies in Paris and Berlin. The feeling that we are creating value for all these people is exhilarating and drives our team to maintain this fast pace. However, as founder, I know this is just the beginning.
We have a clear vision for GoCater. A vision of changing the dynamics of an industry. We want to rethink the rules to create a sustainable system that keeps up with current demands. And we’re extremely motivated to make this happen.
As you’ll find out below, this vision involves changing the habits of an entire industry. Therefore, we’re conscious that our team’s strength alone won’t be enough to reach our vision. The success will depend on our capacity to get the entire catering community (our team, caterers, clients, investors, media etc…) involved and convinced by a common goal.
So, as a first step, let me introduce GoCater’s vision for our entire community:
GoCater is restructuring how the corporate catering industry works. We envision a future where every company has seamlessly and cost-efficiently added catering to their work environment. We envision a future where every caterer has the means to run a client-centric, profitable, growing and data-driven business. GoCater is the platform that will enable this change, building a bright future for the corporate catering industry.
This is a new structure for an industry that hasn’t changed in over 30 years and which is now ready to move forward. The opportunity is huge. The shift is radical.
To make it happen, we think that the transformation relies on 4 core themes: user experience, centralisation, automation and data. Together, with our community, if we understand the value of these themes and embed them in our businesses, we’re convinced the shift will happen.
Theme 1 — A great user experience is today’s norm.
Our professional lives are now surrounded by awesome digital services creating new rules. We’re all experiencing the SaaS-boom and what it implies: new software is making our days at work better, both online and offline, with the power of good user experience. It’s now time to apply the magic formula to Corporate Catering. The industry needs a product where supply and demand can finally meet in a beautiful and seamless way. We simply believe that, with digital tools, you should be able to add catering services to your work environment within minutes.
What this means for GoCater: booking and experiencing a catering service must be seamless. We’re building software where all caterers will show and update their offers in real time. Companies will find and book exactly what they want in a breeze. Online — pictures, customer ratings, food composition, user preferences and pricing must all be available at first glance for a hassle-free and time-saving process. Offline — tracking and communication must be integrated, allowing both clients and caterers to coordinate. Both parties must be able to see the progress and next steps (booking, preparation, delivery, billing…), and the food experience should be exactly as expected.
Theme 2 — Centralise the diversity.
Corporate Catering is a very rich offer. It is hyper-local by essence — caterers open their shops/cafes/restaurants/delis and deliver to local companies. Caterers are often dependent on a few companies who represent most of their income. Over time, thousands of independent caterers built an incredible diversity of experiences. But this offer is fragmented, invisible and using no standards, limiting the potential.
We believe at GoCater that this creates a unique opportunity. Our platform aims to capitalise on this diversity by making it accessible to everyone. Caterers joining the platform, through a smooth and quick onboarding process, must instantly access thousands of clients. These clients can easily switch between suppliers and experiences, dividing their spending between multiple caterers and not just relying on their nextdoor caterer. Virtuous by definition, this model promises flexibility to clients and freedom for caterers with less dependency on only a few high-spending customers.
Theme 3 — Automation : the path to savings, profits and growth.
GoCater aims to bring value to the catering industry by helping everyone save time through automation.
We want hard-working entrepreneurs to be able to create a catering service and sell instantly on the marketplace. They can define their own rules (delivery time, minimum value for orders…) and create their offer within minutes. In a few words, GoCater provides suppliers the power to focus on and continually improve their product rather than spending time on sales and marketing. By automating sales activities for caterers, we make profitability a short-term reality and we unleash caterers’ growth potential.
We want assistants and office managers to focus on what counts. Let’s be honest, booking a caterer is not a core activity — making their team happy is. So GoCater must save them time when booking catering. The tool will remember your team’s food preferences, allergies and habits. We want GoCater to suggest to companies personalised and relevant offers with 1-click payment. We help them save time, money, and focus on employee happiness.
Theme 4 — Data accelerates innovation
Finally, GoCater aims to bring a so far ignored but very powerful tool into the catering industry: data. While automation leads to smarter processes, data has the power to create new opportunities for tomorrow’s catering. It opens new doors, helping GoCater and caterers understand how to improve their services.
Through data, GoCater will identify winning strategies and characteristics of demand to give the best advice to caterers joining the platform. Using client reviews, navigation tracking, booking habits and trends, our software will then assist caterers in their innovation process. They will be able to test their new products on GoCater and gather market feedback at startup speed. Data brings us next level automation but also knowledge of what works and what doesn’t, for everything, from pricing to delivery.
Building the future of the Corporate Catering Industry, together
Far from being a political slogan, our main job in the next few months will be to involve every player in the industry. From clients and caterers to investors, we need to build trust around the win-win vision shared here and prove our capacity to bring Corporate Catering into a new digital era.
Caterers — looking for a more profitable, flexible and smart environment for your business? Join GoCater today, for free. With 100+ partners already on board, be part of the professionals building a new future for the industry.
Companies — looking for the fastest and smartest way to book catering? Find out about GoCater’s amazing platform, our dedicated company tool, and judge the experience for yourself. Among UBS, L’Oréal, Trainline and 450+ other companies, simplify your Corporate Catering and finally focus on what matters.
Entrepreneurs, media, investors — curious about GoCater’s journey? Drop me an email :-)
Readers — ask us anything in the comment section. We’ll be happy to answer! And if you enjoyed the article, some 💛 love is always welcome!
— Stephen and the GoCater team