Breaking Bread ft. Erle Dardick, Founder of Monkey Group

Nick Belsito
Jun 26, 2019 · 2 min read

OpenCity’s CEO, Nick Belsito “Breaks Bread” with Erle Dardick, Founder of Monkey Group, a leader and innovator of world-class software targeting the catering space, as they discuss Erle’s entrepreneurial experience and the most important values behind running a successful business — integrity, culture, passion, community, and trust. Monkey Group has over 8,000 restaurants under management, and most recently, they were acquired by EzCater.

Erle started his career with Tony’s Deli, and then developed a website to support it. That’s when he decided to focus on what he was truly passionate about. When asked about his experience as an entrepreneur, he said, “saying ‘no’ is never an option, you always have to say ‘yes, of course’ and figure out how to do it after”.

So, what’s the secret behind his success, Erle exclaimed, “my perspective of how I want to see my business got baked into the software, and that became the secret sauce. We wish there was a master plan behind my business, but there was not. But the one thing that we did really well is that we are customer focused. If our customers are happy, then the solution is taking its path organically and going in the right direction from a product perspective, and the rest of it is culture, people and the vision”.

Erle also shared his experience behind acquisitions, which has always been a knowledge gap among young entrepreneurs. “When you get someone who’s trying to acquire you, transitioning from a startup to a potential world-class, scalable business, the process is not always about the finances, but directly connected to emotional aspects,’’ emphasized Erle Dardick.

Erle’s advice for your entrepreneurs — “The process is super complex, the experience was not clear what the end goal would be, but what I did was to feed my own passion the whole time. I was doing what I loved doing”. Lastly, he shared one other tip,“at a time when it’s the hardest to believe, is the time you need to believe more. That’s what keeps the whole thing burning alive”. And that’s how Erle Dardick not only survived, but created a thriving and successful business.

About Monkey Group
Monkey Group helps restaurant operators grow sales and increase profits by educating them to become experts at feeding their customers where they live, work and play.

About Erle Dardick
In 1997, a small deli on Vancouver’s Commercial Drive was struggling, Erle Dardick, entrepreneur, business turnaround expert, and off-premise thought leader reconstructed the business and managed to leverage a small retail location and brand, to grow catering sales out the back door, and between 1998 and 2001 ramped up overall annual sales to $2 million.

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