Our Vision to Reinvent an 18 Billion Euro Industry
After three years of developing its Private Chef service in Europe, La Belle Assiette has kick-started 2016 with huge ambition. With the launch of many exciting new catering services, the challenges are great but the goal is clear: become the largest catering company in the world.
Let us share this vision with you.
I — A story
Since March 2013 (yes, we will be celebrating our 3rd birthday soon!), La Belle Assiette has worked on a unique project: make entertaining an amazing, hassle-free experience. We want to organise your events, so you can cherish those special moments together with friends, family or colleagues.
We believe everyone should be able to host in a fun and easy way. That is why La Belle Assiette exists: to provide delicious, stress-free and enjoyable experiences at an affordable price, in just a few clicks.
The first step to achieving this vision was to develop a centralised, integrated, innovative and international private-chef service. We reached this goal at the end of 2015, with around 650 chefs in 6 countries: France, Belgium, Luxembourg, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and Germany. We have majorly contributed to the growth of the private-chef market, thanks to an increasingly rich selection of products, including our ‘Temptation’ menus at £39 per guest. This success was covered by international media: TIME Magazine, the Washington Post, the Daily Mail, Monocle, The Telegraph, Techcrunch… to name a few.
The service, based on a ‘taxonomy-driven’ marketplace (click here if you’re curious about this business model) and a 25-strong super team, is growing every day. What’s more, we recently announced that La Belle Assiette received a €1.3M investment at the start of the year, bringing our total funding up to €3M.
But that was just a start. You didn’t really think we’d stop here, did you?
Since our launch, many of you have asked for services that go beyond the private-chef model. We have been informally organising buffets, canapé receptions, cooking classes and office lunches. So, in some ways, La Belle Assiette has become a part-time caterer.
We have since analysed the wider catering market and explored all possible avenues for growth. After a few months of research, the following conclusion came to us:
Neglected, out-dated, fragmented, disorganised and lacking transparency, the events catering industry (worth €18bn in Europe) has fallen far behind other industries, where so many services are being reinvented thanks to technology: transport (Uber), accommodation (Airbnb), retail (Alibaba)…
Do you know where to find a caterer for you next party or office lunch? Do you know how to book it? Can you guarantee the quality? Do you know how much it should cost?
No ? We don’t either. So we decided to solve this problem.
This became the starting point for La Belle Assiette’s future. A future where the answers to all your entertaining needs come together on a single platform, providing clear and carefully curated options just a few clicks away. A future where La Belle Assiette becomes the world’s largest catering company.
For us, this future is just around the corner.
II — A recipe
With an unparalleled network of over 650 talented partners, La Belle Assiette is already capable of offering other catering services, in addition to the classic private-chef dining. We are also confident we can bring ‘intimacy’ back to an industry that has forgotten what entertaining is all about.
Building on the successes from our private-chef service, we have started to develop some clear products:
· Buffet: La Belle Assiette prepares and lays out a buffet of sharing dishes in 30 minutes, before slipping away (perfect for small informal gatherings)
· Canapé Receptions: La Belle Assiette provides canapés and stays on location to deliver excellent service (perfect for larger receptions)
· Cooking Classes: La Belle Assiette provides cooking classes in your own home, where you get to enjoy your creations afterwards
· Office Lunches: La Belle Assiette provides delivery for office lunches, especially intended for businesses
· And, of course, our Private-chef service.
III — A plan
We have set out a comprehensive plan for the launch of these new services, based on a 6-9 months calendar and adapted to each country. There will be a trial period before each service launch, using clever testing with a segment of our client community.
To launch these services, we are building on 3 of our best practices:
· Clear and progressive pricing
· Coherent and consistent menus for each price level
· Abundance of choice (types of cuisine, dietary requirements, occasions)
From now on, these rules will be the foundation for every La Belle Assiette service, and will be the backdrop to any changes that might take place.
Last but not least, we will develop our community of chefs by opening it to new talents, especially independent caterers, who can now join our platform. We are so excited to bring their know-how to our vision, so that tomorrow, we can offer the ultimate catering service.
To achieve this vision in the first half of 2016, the La Belle Assiette team will work exclusively on this project, whilst focussing on France, Germany and the UK. In the second half of the year, La Belle Assiette may spread its wings to discover new places around the world! Though we’re keeping these secret for now… ✈
At the end of the 2016, La Belle Assiette will provide a complete catering service, based on 5 services that will cater for all your needs: Private-chefs, Buffets, Canapé Receptions, Office Lunches and Cooking Classes. We will guarantee that our partners are talented and will provide high quality experiences which can be booked in a few simple steps.
Finally, we believe this is not just the future of La Belle Assiette. It is also the future of entertaining.
The La Belle Assiette Team
To fully understand our vision from a business perspective, we strongly advise you read our CEO Stephen’s post about ‘taxonomy driven’ marketplaces.