Announcing our investment in Novo Labs

The problem facing brick-and-mortar restaurants

For brick-and-mortar restaurants, operating margins are thin and have been increasingly challenged in recent years by the pressure to adopt online ordering and delivery apps, which eat away at that margin. Phone orders, which still make up a significant share of all restaurant transactions, have always been another area of pain. Having kitchen or front desk staff take calls is cumbersome, and often results in inconsistencies in service. And we are all familiar with the frustration of being put on hold, or worse, having our call dropped, in an attempt to call in an order. It’s easy to empathize with the restaurant owner, however, given that dedicated staff or outsourcing to a call center can be cost prohibitive for the bottom line.

Novo Labs brings conversational AI to large restaurant chains

With these issues in mind, the founders of Novo Labs set out to create an end-to-end voice ordering service for restaurants chains using the latest advancements in machine learning. The company uses a proprietary natural language processing stack to handle the real-world conditions of how customers actually speak when they place orders through existing voice channels, at a fraction of the cost of the alternatives. Currently, the service handles thousands of live customer phone orders each week. And today, I’m excited to announce that Silverton is leading the company’s $2 million seed round.

With decades of operating experience at the intersection of restaurants and technology, co-founders Clinton Coleman and Jeff Loukas know firsthand the issues facing their customers today. I’m looking forward to working with them as they build the leading conversational commerce service that makes ordering easier and more intelligent.

You can read more in the Dallas Business Journal here.

Silverton Partners is the leading venture fund in Austin investing in early stage startups.

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