Houston restaurant tech now serving optimized mobile ordering
A new Houston company has designed a platform that enables mobile ordering at no cost to restaurants.
Cloche, a mobile software platform named after the bell-shape dish cover that's known to come with room service orders, has launched in Houston and is currently looking for restaurants interested in utilizing their technology to upgrade their eatery with mobile ordering at no cost to the restaurant.
Alfredo Arvide, co-founder and managing director, tells InnovationMap that the idea for the platform came after the pandemic forced restaurateurs to quickly pivot to touch-free menus. Now that the consumer has adapted to scanning QR codes to view menus, the next step is to optimize ordering — something that will also help with the labor shortages that restaurants are now facing.
"Now is the time transform this industry by creating a better meal experience for the consumers, an easier job for the restaurant staff and a more efficient, more profitable business for restaurant owners," Arvide says.
Existing technology costs restaurants thousands, but Cloche takes its cut on the consumer side. Customers pay a small percentage of their total for a platform fee — something that costs significantly less than the tip they'd leave if they had a waiter serve their table.
"We want to put consumers in control of their meal experience by connecting consumer’s phones directly with the kitchens," Arvide says, noting that the platform allows for users to request refills, condiments, and more. "We also want to uphold the restaurants’ staff wellbeing. Our intention is not to have technology replace the human aspect of the restaurant experience but take it to the next level."
One Houston restaurant — Cascabel Mexican Vegan in Spring Branch — has already deployed the technology. The company is actively seeking new eateries to onboard the platform. Arvide says any restaurant can benefit from Cloche, but right now he things cafes and casual dining spots are primed for the platform.
"While the Cloche experience will come more natural for fast food, counter service, ghost kitchens and overall, less personal meal experiences, we are working hard on adapting our service to support everything, from food-trucks to more sophisticated upscale restaurants where we would expect – and encourage – the wait staff to shift their focus from taking food orders manually to delighting customers," Arvide says.
The software for the platform has been designed by Blue People, a Houston-based custom software development shop. The organization works with companies of all sizes looking to develop their own platform, including startups looking to build their MVPs and mobile apps. In addition to his role at Cloche, Arvide serves as chief innovation officer for Blue People.