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The Dispatcher: Issue 5

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Wary of Third-Party Delivery, Some Restaurateurs Say, 'It's a Parasitic Relationship.' 

Unlike an increasing number of casual restaurant owners in Pittsburgh, Sonja Finn is fending off food-delivery companies because they undercut the very reason she opened Dinette.

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Tips to Crafting a Winning Delivery Strategy


L.E.K Consulting recently released a report predicting delivery sales would grow at more than three times the rate of on-premises revenue through 2023.

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The Last Mile


In the world of e-commerce, customers want two things: faster shipping times and cheaper prices. As companies compete along these two metrics, squeezed margins force new innovations in efficiency. 

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Autonomous Food Deliveries (And Robots) Put To The Test

The last mile can be vexing for firms aiming to get their products in the hands of consumers. For food companies, the logistics of the last 10 feet can prove a challenge as well.

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Swift Tip: Add Custom Proof of Delivery Fields

Do you need additional information from your customers or drivers as the order is being completed?

 We can help you add these custom fields, such as "# of Boxes" or "POD Name".  

GetSwift is transforming last mile delivery for end-to-end with two new acquisitions!

GetSwift, a leader in last-mile delivery technology for everything from pizza to alcohol and other goods, took aim at that problem with two new acquisitions. The acquisitions—of North American delivery management platform Delivery BIZ Pro and a popular workforce scheduling provider, Scheduling+—are part of the company’s ongoing strategy to unify all the technology needed to address every step of online food delivery, from farm to restaurant kitchen to the home. GetSwift hopes to capture business that even e-commerce giants have had trouble nailing: streamlined delivery technology from end to end.  

GetSwift Announces Two Strategic Acquisitions in North America

Acquires Delivery BIZ Pro and Scheduling+

  •  Integrates Intelligent Employee Scheduling, Task Management + Time & Attendance to GetSwift’s End-to-End Solutions

  • Introduces Recurring Home Delivery Software to GetSwift’s Global Delivery Automation Platform

  • Positions Company for Next Phase

GetSwift Limited (ASX: GSW) (“GetSwift” or “the Company”), a leading provider of SaaS logistics technology, today announced the signing of a definitive agreement for the acquisition of the North American delivery management platform Delivery BIZ Pro and the acquisition of popular workforce scheduling provider, Scheduling+.

GetSwfit, a leading provider of SaaS logistics technology, today announced the acquisition of North American delivery management platform Delivery BIZ Pro and the acquisition of popular workforce scheduling provider, Scheduling+.

Delivery BIZ Pro (“DBP”) is a privately held SaaS company based in the United States that offers a subscription-based cloud service for businesses with recurring product orders particularly within the produce, meal kit, dairy, farm-to-table, water, home and commercial delivery sectors. DBP’s platform brings together four key components that allow recurring delivery industry sectors to employ the best methodology for their logistics fulfillment.

"Delivery BIZ Pro is a proven and leading delivery management system in the attractive recurring delivery market in North America," said Bane Hunter, CEO, GetSwift. "With its diverse product offering including front-end ordering, route mapping and business intelligence, DBP and GetSwift will enable customers to have an end-to-end last mile solution in key markets. We are very excited about the potential to leverage our infrastructure and resources for our combined growth.”

Scheduling+ (“SP”) is the flagship product of a privately held SaaS company based in the United States, Web Software, LLC, that combines staff scheduling, task management, time and attendance recordkeeping, and payroll into one easy to use subscription-based cloud solution, which allows businesses of all sizes to reduce the amount of time spent on employee management and optimize human capital management.

"Employee scheduling is a major pain point for many of our customers and a dependency when scaling delivery growth. Integrating Scheduling+ into GetSwift’s platform provides a best-in-class scheduling solution for our clients - one that will fully integrate into our platform,” Hunter said. “In addition to offering scheduling services to GetSwift clients, Scheduling+ represents a tremendous global growth opportunity to penetrate and automate the antiquated workforce scheduling market for small, medium, and enterprise customers. Instead of having to partner with external providers for this function we are now able to offer this as a comprehensive proprietary solution. We are excited about the new growth platform that SP brings to our business.”

Key employees from both companies, including their founders who will be incentivized to remain for at least 2 years, will be joining GetSwift and will be integrated into the existing team. Hunter said, “We are excited to expand the size of GetSwift’s product offerings, and add technical, product, sales and marketing expertise, with acquisitions that we believe will create long-term shareholder value.”

“Delivery BIZ PRO has focused on delivering innovative SaaS solutions to the large and growing farm-to-table market in North America, among other sectors, for the last ten years,” said Judd Payne, CEO and co-founder of Delivery BIZ PRO. “We’ve had a myriad of options, but the opportunity to become a part of GetSwift and to work closely with its executive management was a very important factor for us. We aim to leverage the sales and growth infrastructure of GetSwift, expand our scale, and accelerate our ability to penetrate the last mile delivery market with our joint cloud-based solution.”

“There are over 2 billion hourly paid workers and drivers globally and many employers are using outdated methods to manage their workforce. The addressable market opportunity is very large for our cloud-based scheduling software,” said Erick Prohs, CEO and co-founder of Scheduling+. “Joining GetSwift’s SaaS platform allows us to leverage best-in-class global management, sales, product, and engineering teams to accelerate our ability to provide our scheduling services to businesses to optimize and increase the efficiency of their hourly workforce operations. We are very excited by the potential of what our combined platforms will deliver.”

Details Regarding the Acquisitions

The board of directors of GetSwift has unanimously approved the transactions.

As part of the acquisition of Scheduling+, GetSwift will no longer rely on third party scheduling solutions on its platform and will replace them with Scheduling+ and its forthcoming AI components.

Under the terms of the transactions, GetSwift acquisition consideration for the assets of DBP and for SP is comprised of USD $4.5 million in cash, plus assumption of liabilities, with a USD $1 million payment structure for Scheduling+ over a 12-month period. GetSwift will fund the cash consideration with cash from its balance sheet. The transaction is not subject to any financing condition. Evershed Sutherland LLP acted as legal advisor to GetSwift on these transactions.

GetSwift is an emerging growth company and is subject to a variety of risks. The Company is not yet profitable, and there can be no assurance that it will achieve profitability. The Company’s business and a variety of investment considerations are discussed in more detail in the Company’s filings with the Australia Securities Exchange (ASX). Investors are encouraged to review the more complete information contained in such filings.

About GetSwift Limited

Technology to Optimise Global Delivery Logistics

GetSwift is a worldwide leader in delivery management automation. From enterprise to hyper-local, businesses across dozens of industries around the globe depend on our SaaS platform to bring visibility, accountability, efficiency and savings to their supply chain and “Last Mile" operations. GetSwift is headquartered in New York City and is listed on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX:GSW). For further background, please visit GetSwift.co.


The Dispatcher: Issue 4

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Logistics Market Expansion Dominated By Manufacturing, Retail  

The nightmare of 2013, and the roughly two million packages that were delivered late, still looms large in the minds of retailers, carriers, and customers. So let’s check in to see how some of the largest logistics providers and retailers are preparing for this 

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The World’s Most Valuable Resource is No Longer Oil, but Data

A NEW commodity spawns a lucrative, fast-growing industry, prompting antitrust regulators to step in to restrain those who control its flow. A century ago, the resource in question was oil. Now similar concerns are being raised by the giants that deal in data, the oil of the digital era.

 

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These are the Transportation & Logistics Predictions Business Insider Intelligence got right for 2018

At the end of 2017, we outlined five predictions for the transportation and logistics industries for the year ahead. We're now revisiting those predictions to see how they stood the test of time.  Here's what we got right about 2018.

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Amazon To Expand Whole Foods: Is AmazonFresh Strategic? Will Amazon Acquire A Grocery Distributor?

According to the Wall Street Journal, Amazon is planning to build and expand Whole Foods stores across the U.S. to put more customers within range of the e-commerce giant’s two-hour delivery service. 

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Skip the Bag Lunch: Students Opt for Delivery Over Food From Home and Cafeterias

Gone are the days of bag lunches and bologna sandwiches. With a tap on a smartphone, students are getting burgers, paninis and sushi delivered right into their hungry hands at school.

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Swift Tip
: Want $250? Refer a Friend to GetSwift 

       How it works:

  1. Refer someone new to GetSwift

  2. Someone new uses GetSwift for 90 days

  3. You get $250 in your account!

  4. Pat yourself on the back

  5. Refer another friend

The Dispatcher: Issue 3

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 2018 Holiday Logistics Guide 

 The nightmare of 2013, and the roughly two million packages that were delivered late, still looms large in the minds of retailers, carriers, and customers. So let’s check in to see how some of the largest logistics providers and retailers are preparing for this 

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Three Future Delivery Trends We are Likely to See in E-commerce

 Of course, many brands are already offering next day delivery, but same day delivery is likely to become very much the norm in the years to come. Research shows that consumers are willing to pay more if it means getting faster delivery. 

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The Scooter Stampede of 2018 is Great News for Urban Transportation

The beauty of the e-scooters that companies like Skip, Bird, and Lime can whisk you across towns and parks for a couple dollars. Pick one up where you find it and drop it off where you like, as long as it’s not obstructing traffic.

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This Self-Driving Car Uses a Fold-Out Robot Arm to Deliver Parcels

Based on a video of Lotte in action, the delivery vehicle can not only drive itself to a secure locker, but even place a package inside with a fold-out robotic arm — eliminating the need for any human intervention.

How to Make Most of Crowdsourcing in Last-Mile Delivery

As the holiday season gets underway, we’re seeing more and more delivery vehicles on the road. But not all of them are immediately recognizable. That’s because many shippers are turning to crowdsourced logistics to tackle last-mile delivery. As the trend gains speed, consider these strategies to make the most out of crowdsourcing.

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Swift Tip
: The Customer Feedback Link automatically checks the pulse of your business 

  • Utilize the White Labeled Customer Feedback link to get ratings and comments in real time

  • Customers can use the 5-Star rating scale as well as leave feedback

  • Proactively reach out to unsatisfied customers before they reach out to you...or worse post on the internet!

The Dispatcher: Issue 2

Mercedes’ AI research could mean faster package delivery

Using a combination of computer vision and AI, Mercedes believes it can help reduce the time needed to load packages onto vehicles and make sure these boxes are in the optimal spot for an AI-created delivery route. More importantly to delivery companies, the system is cost effective.

To reduce traffic, pollution, delivery services hop on the bike

“UPS is very focused on urban logistics, and our ‘cycle logistics’ solutions, which the cargo e-bike is part of, are all designed to address congestion and pollution,” UPS spokesperson Glenn Zaccara said in an email.  


How smart logistics can help a retailer win the same-day delivery game

Retailers can remain competitive if they can determine how to offer same-day shipping at low prices. Same-day delivery is no longer just a plus but an expectation

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The last mile: Logistics’ final frontier meets gig culture
The so-called "last mile" conundrum has stumped otherwise perfectly tuned systems, confronting them with routes and infrastructure that simply aren’t designed to handle the demands of frequent shipments.

The cost of a failed delivery continues to rise, survey shows

"Today, simply tracking a package isn't enough. Retailers and brands that want to thrive need to invest in people, processes and tools that positively impact last mile delivery and customer loyalty."

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Swift Tip
: Use Automated Alerts to prevent failed delivery  

  • Maintain, retain and build customer loyalty through proactive outreach

  • Let your customers know when to expect their delivery with a customized SMS or Email

  • Send a Tracking Link and customers can follow their delivery on our White Labeled Map...they will even see a live ETA!

  • Solicit feedback with an automatic survey to identify strengths and weaknesses of your business

Introducing The Dispatcher: Issue 1

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Looking Ahead: 11 Predictions On How Drone Deliveries Will Work

As commercial drones gain in popularity, businesses and consumers are speculating about the technology's future role in logistics. Will the systems allow for smarter deliveries at lower costs?

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The Quick and The Late: Testing Same-day Delivery

Same-day delivery offers the tantalizing convenience of online ordering with nearly the . same immediacy of store buying. But how well are stores pulling it off?

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E-Commerce Industry’s Last Mile Needs Create New Demand for Old Warehouse Space

CRE developers can use everything from old government facilities to brownfield sites to capitalize on the need for last mile warehouses.

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You Can Send a Scary Clown to Deliver Doughnuts (and Nightmares) to Your Friends

You don't really know how much you love doughnuts until you're faced with the decision of whether or not it's worth it to snatch one from the hands of a scary clown.

Cannabis Delivery Is the Next Big Trend in the $10 Billion Marijuana Industry

Staying ahead of the curve is how you make the most money in the stock market, which is why we're eyeing the explosive new cannabis delivery sector.

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Swift Tip: Use Your Data to Find Efficient Gaps

  • The heatmap shows where you are currently doing deliveries....but our Swift Experts suggest using what you don't see.  

  • Analyze the empty spots to target new or restrict low volume delivery areas!

  • Use your average delivery by hour or day of the week for smart driver roster planning

GetSwift Passes 10 Million Transactions with 750,000+ in November

GetSwift Limited (ASX: GSW) (‘GetSwift’ or the ‘Company’), announced that during the month of November its Cloud-based SaaS delivery management system achieved its 10 millionth cumulative transaction since the company listed on the ASX.

GetSwift Passes 10 Million Transactions with 750,000+ in November

In addition, the firm announced that it achieved its third performance milestone, as set out in its prospectus, having conducted over 750,000 transactions during the month of November. The achievement of this record figure shows the acceleration of the Company’s sales and onboarding efforts.

CEO Bane Hunter commented, “We are pleased with the growth of transactions by an increasing diversity of businesses in more locations around the globe. Every hour of every day, businesses count on GetSwift to deliver faster, cheaper and with more transparency for their customers and their team.”

About GetSwift Limited

Technology to Optimise Global Delivery Logistics

GetSwift is a worldwide leader in delivery management automation. From enterprise to hyper-local, businesses across dozens of industries around the globe depend on our SaaS platform to bring visibility, accountability, efficiency and savings to their supply chain and “Last Mile" operations.

GetSwift Announces Technology Expansion Plan

GetSwift Limited (ASX: GSW) (“GetSwift” or “the Company”) announced today plans to expand its technology team with the opening of a new software development center in Denver, Colorado, creating jobs in fields including machine learning, artificial intelligence, product, design, and testing.

GetSwift Announces Technology Expansion Plan, Opening New Development Center in Denver, Colorado

“GetSwift is excited to create new jobs in Denver, Colorado,” said Dennis Noto, GetSwift’s Chief Technology Officer. “Today’s announcement marks an acceleration of the build-out of GetSwift’s global technology infrastructure and human capital. Given market demand, customer pipeline, and our product roadmap we look forward to expanding our technology team in the United States. Thank you to our partners in the city for welcoming us.”

As part of the technology expansion, the Company has hired a Vice President of Architecture, App, and Data and a Vice President of Architecture Infrastructure and Artificial Intelligence. As part of the technology expansion the product function will now report to the CTO. With this reorganization Hal Danziger has left the Company to pursue other opportunities.

About GetSwift Limited

Technology to Optimise Global Delivery Logistics

GetSwift is a worldwide leader in delivery management automation. From enterprise to hyper-local, businesses across dozens of industries around the globe depend on our SaaS platform to bring visibility, accountability, efficiency and savings to their supply chain and “Last Mile" operations. GetSwift is headquartered in New York City and is listed on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX:GSW).

GetSwift Appoints Belinda Gibson to Board

GetSwift Limited (ASX:GSW) (“GetSwift” or “the Company”) today announced the appointment of Belinda Gibson to the GetSwift Board of Directors. Ms. Gibson brings over 30 years of governance, directorship, and corporate advisory experience to GetSwift. Ms. Gibson has extensive securities markets experience including a former role as Deputy Chairman of the Australian Securities & Investments Commission (“ASIC”) responsible for capital markets and listed company oversight.

GetSwift Chairman Michael Fricklas said, “Today’s announcement demonstrates GetSwift’s ongoing commitment to a strong and independent Board of Directors. Adding Belinda confirms our commitment to best-in-class governance practices with a majority of independent directors. She has an outstanding reputation that is well-earned and I have enjoyed getting to know Belinda over the past few months. We will be a stronger board by adding her wisdom, experience, talent and spirit.”

Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director Bane Hunter said, “Belinda has an exemplary track record as a director, legal advisor, and leading figure on corporate governance. Her extensive experience working with public companies will provide tremendous value to the Company and its shareholders.”

Ms. Gibson said, “I am delighted to join GetSwift’s Board during such an exciting period of growth for the Company. I have spent considerable time meeting with the Company’s directors, management and employees and examining diligence materials. I am very comfortable with the Company’s strong commercial and financial position. After reviewing the position over the last couple of months I have a high degree of confidence in Bane, Joel, and the rest of the GetSwift management team, as well as Chairman Michael Fricklas and fellow director David Ryan. I believe the Company has excellent potential for long-term shareholder value creation.”

Ms. Gibson’s distinguished career spans private and public service. She is a company director and corporate adviser with extensive experience of the securities and financial markets and particularly regulatory strategy, corporate transactions and governance arrangements. She was a corporate law partner at the leading Australian law firm Mallesons Stephen Jaques for 20 years before becoming a Commissioner and then Deputy Chair of ASIC from 2007 to 2013. She is presently a director of Brisbane Airport Corporation, Ausgrid, Citigroup Pty Ltd (Citi’s Australian retail bank arm) and Thorn Group.

In the past she has served as a director of Airservices Australia and The Sir Robert Menzies Memorial Foundation. She is presently a Trustee of The Australian Museum and the Lizard Island Reef Research Foundation. She is a Member of the Chief Executive Women and chaired the CEW Scholarship Committee. She is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and a Fellow of the Governance Institute of Australia. Ms. Gibson has a Bachelor of Economics and Laws from The University of Sydney and a Master of Laws from The University of Cambridge.

GetSwift Appoints Dennis Noto as Chief Technology Officer

  • Brings Three Decades of Engineering and Leadership Experience

  • Distinguished Architect of AI and Cognitive Solutions for Enterprise

GetSwift Limited (ASX: GSW) (“GetSwift” or “the Company”), a leading provider of SaaS logistics technology, today announced it has appointed Dennis Noto as Chief Technology Officer, effective immediately. Noto brings over 30 years of technology leadership experience to GetSwift, most recently as Executive Architect and CTO for IBM’s Watson Cognitive Enterprise Solutions. He will report directly to Bane Hunter, GetSwift’s Chief Executive Officer.

As CTO, Noto will be responsible for executing our technology strategy, scaling our technology infrastructure, deepening our artificial intelligence and machine learning expertise, actualizing new IP products and driving execution on our product roadmap to be the global leader in last mile software.

Hunter said, “In our extensive search for a CTO, Dennis emerged as the natural choice given his long track record of building and scaling complex platforms, his deep knowledge of enterprise systems and customers, strong background in artificial intelligence, and his sound understanding of consumer-facing software. I’m delighted to officially welcome Dennis to our team and look forward to his contributions to GetSwift’s leading last mile SaaS platform.”

“GetSwift has a strong reputation as a best-in-class and innovative leader in the SaaS last-mile marketplace,” Noto stated. “In addition to addressing some of the most demanding challenges within the last mile, GetSwift is creating global products to enable enterprises of all sizes to optimize their delivery operations. I’m thrilled to join this talented and fast-growing team and bring my knowledge and relationships to bear on such exciting projects,” he added.

Noto’s distinguished and diverse experience spans several innovative firms. Most recently, he was the Executive Architect and CTO for IBM’s Watson Cognitive Enterprise Solutions, where he helped Fortune 500 leaders build cognitive AI solutions with natural language processing, machine learning and content analytics to redefine the customer experience. His teams designed and built critical systems to harness IBM’s Watson Cognitive Enterprise Solutions used by large, multi-billion-dollar clients across many industries.

Noto’s career in technology has also included CIO positions at Trust Company of America and Scottrade, and various technology strategy roles at ADP. In 2012 he was honored with the 25th Annual CIO 100 Award for mobile customer branded hybrid architecture, when Trust Company of America launched branded desktop and mobile apps allowing investors, representatives, and advisors to access account information anytime, anywhere, on any browser or mobile device. Noto has led agile teams spanning both business and technical responsibilities for enterprise product strategy, project management, UX/UI design, software development, infrastructure architecture, IT governance, information security management, and datacenter/cloud management.

As part of the Company’s broader strategic execution capabilities, two newly-hired Vice Presidents of AI Architecture and Infrastructure and of Software Architecture will both be reporting to Noto.

About GetSwift Limited

Technology to Optimise Global Delivery Logistics

GetSwift is a worldwide leader in delivery management automation. From enterprise to hyper-local, businesses across dozens of industries around the globe depend on our SaaS platform to bring visibility, accountability, efficiency and savings to their supply chain and “Last Mile” operations. GetSwift is headquartered in New York City and is listed on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX:GSW). For further background, please visit GetSwift.co.

GetSwift Named Company of the Year by Logistics Tech Outlook

GetSwift Limited (ASX: GSW) (“GetSwift” or “the Company”), a leading provider of logistics technology, has been named Company of the Year by industry publication Logistics Tech Outlook.

“We take pride in ourselves to honor GetSwift as Company of the Year in our annual ranking list which features an elite group of companies that are setting a new benchmark in the Transport Management arena,” said Linda James, Managing Editor of Logistics Tech Outlook.

The award to GetSwift is featured in an article quoting Chief Financial Officer Daniel W. Lawrence, who highlights the inspiration and evolution of GetSwift’s technology. “GetSwift’s portal allows clients to gain control of the last mile to improve speed to market, dramatically improving customer satisfaction, while doing away with the supply chains of yesterday which relied on the disparate legacy technologies of multiple carriers and fleets,” Lawrence said.

Starting as a local liquor delivery company struggling with last-mile inefficiencies, GetSwift has grown into a pioneering, customer-centric Software as a Service (SaaS) platform that solves basic last-mile issues as well as complicated supply chain challenges. This allows its multi-industry client base, including companies large and small, the luxury of a sophisticated delivery operation.

In the article, Brett Houldin, a GetSwift client and the CEO of Craveable Brands, which operates over 570 restaurants in Australia, said “Partnering with GetSwift to deploy their platform across our restaurants has been transformative. We are now consistently among the top performers in our industry with respect to last-mile logistics and actionable business intelligence.”

Logistics Tech Outlook is a relied-upon resource for global logistics leaders. From Warehouse Managers up to Chief Executives and Information Officers, Logistics Tech Outlook provides valuable insights for decision makers who approve, specify, recommend, purchase or influence the purchase of delivery automation solutions.

The full article is available here.

GetSwift prepares to deliver

From The Australian - David Swan

Melbourne-based delivery logistics software outfit GetSwift has landed the “godfather of angel investment” Sig Mosley and former Defense Advanced Research Projects scientist John Wilson as senior advisers to its board, as it looks to push further into the US.

Mr Mosley, who has been the most prolific tech investor in the southeast of the US since 1990 having invested in 120 start-ups, said he was very impressed with the Australians and their business “made all the sense in the world”.

“We know logistics and we are very involved with logistics, there are very few companies that have this kind of growth pattern that go from inception to this point, this stage of scale,” he said, adding he and Mr Wilson were planning on investing, but the company had already gone public in Australia.

“It’s funny, we don’t usually have companies go public at this stage,” Mr Wilson said.

GetSwift’s platform uses algorithms to optimise the delivery service for enterprise firms, focusing on the last mile of deliveries, and is used in 51 countries. Mr Wilson said he hadn’t been able to find a natural barrier to the company’s growth.

“The fact they’re already in multiple language markets, and multiple time zones, and scaling smoothly; there’s just a frictionless component to their growth that suggests they may be on a very high trajectory, with all the ingredients there,” he said.

Mr Mosley is currently the record holder of the largest southeast venture capital deal with the $US5.7 billion acquisition of Tradex by Ariba. He is also a director of The Imlay Foundation, Techbridge, and Entrepreneurs Foundation of the Southeast.

Mr Wilson meanwhile helped develop flexible TV screens and electric vehicles, beginning his work with electric vehicles in a 1993 project with the US DARPA.

While in Washington, he also served as executive director of the Southern Governors Association and Washington office director of the Southern Legislative ­Conference.

GetSwift executive chairman Bane Hunter, a former Foxtel and Viacom executive, said he was thrilled and honoured to have the US executives on the team.

“Their advice, networks and experience will be an important contributor as GetSwift is poised to transform the SaaS logistics sector, not just in Australia, but globally,” he said.

Little Caesars hopes to overtake Australian pizza market

Ernie Koury, Director and owner of Little Caesars, Australia, hopes to open 400 stores across the country.

Ernie Koury, Director and owner of Little Caesars, Australia, hopes to open 400 stores across the country.

IF YOU thought the pizza market was already overcooked, think again — because a US heavyweight is hoping to take a big slice of our $3.7 billion action.

Established in 1959, American pizza chain Little Caesars has their sights set on Australia’s fast food market, and hope to become the biggest pizza franchise in the country.

Opening its first store in Casula in 2014, it’s been a slow burn for the franchise to develop across the country — with just four stores currently sitting in NSW.

But according to Australian director, Ernie Koury, the goal is to boom that number well into the hundreds over the next decade.

Ernie Koury is Director and owner of Little Caesars, Australia. Source: News Corp Australia

Ernie Koury is Director and owner of Little Caesars, Australia.Source:News Corp Australia

 

“The market itself could easily sustain 400 Little Caesar franchises,” Mr Koury told news.com.au.

“But it’s important to get it right. This is not a contest of speed, and about how many stores I can build as soon as I arrive.”

Mr Koury, said his slow rollout is part of the plan to “develop the exact product required for the Australian consumer”.

“If I came to Australia and opened 20 stores at once, then realised we needed to change the format of our business to cater for local requirements — that would be much harder to do,” he said.

“That’s why we opened a single store, provided a product, and observed how it suited the marketplace.

“When you begin any venture like this, you need to make sure you have a core offering that you can watch, manage control and develop.”

Little Caesars Pizza currently has four stores in Australia, with the goal of reaching at least 400. Source: News Corp Australia

Little Caesars Pizza currently has four stores in Australia, with the goal of reaching at least 400.Source:News Corp Australia

 

Mr Koury says after Sydney, he hopes to open five more stores in Australia by the end of this year. And while he isn’t definitive on location, Adelaide, Melbourne, Brisbane, and regional Queensland are all in his sights.

As the third largest pizza franchise in the US, Mr Koury says his ‘Hot-N-Ready’ offering — which allows consumers to purchase and collect a pizza within 30 seconds — is an industry gamechanger.

“There’s lots of meal time choices out there, but it’s how we service our customers — by eliminating the planning and ordering ahead — that can’t be beaten,” he said.

“You can walk in, and within 30 seconds you can have a pepperoni or cheese pizza available straight away.

“Pizza is traditionally a longer term sale process with a lot of planning involved. But with our drive-through service, it actually takes longer to receive your change than to get a pizza.

“It’s something you can’t get anywhere else in the country.”

Australian’s love their pizza, with Dominos and Pizza Hut gobbling up majority of the fast food pizza market. Picture: Jono Searle.  Source: News Corp Australia

Australian’s love their pizza, with Dominos and Pizza Hut gobbling up majority of the fast food pizza market. Picture: Jono Searle. Source:News Corp Australia

 

The Australian pizza market is currently dominated by Dominos, who have around 600 stores plotted across the country. Their franchise accounts for almost half of the sector, with Pizza Hut coming in second.

Last year, Pizza Hut brought out a significant portion of the troubled Eagle Boys pizza chain after they went into administration, and begun converting some of their stores with Pizza Hut’s own branding, boosting their overall store count to more than 320.

Research by IBISWorld predicts revenue growth of 2.3% in the pizza industry from $3.5 billion in 2013-14 to $3.9 billion in 2018-2019.

In the US, Little Caesars comes in as the third biggest pizza chain — after their first store was opened in Michigan almost 60 years ago.

The company has over 4000 stores in the US alone, and according to Nation’s Restaurant News, was recording annual sales of US$3.4 billion ($4.5 billion) in the US in 2015.

In Australia, the franchise has around 120 employees across NSW in its four stores.

“My father was the first franchisee to start Little Caesars in the western states of the US, starting off in Arizona” Mr Koury told news.com.au.

Domino's Pizza currently has more than 600 stores across Australia. Picture: Jamie Hanson. Source: News Limited

Domino's Pizza currently has more than 600 stores across Australia. Picture: Jamie Hanson.Source:News Limited

 

“As a chain that was around Michigan, his store was the first Little Caesars to start the expansion across the country.

“From the age of seven, I was rolling dough with my family, where myself and my siblings worked from a very young age.

“Arizona turned into one of the best markets in the country, which is when he set his sights on Australia.”

Moving to Australia in 1986 to scout the market, Mr Koury’s father decided “the time wasn’t right” to bring the pizza franchise down under.

“My brother and I owned El Paso, Texas and a store in Southern Mexico which we sold in 2009,” he said.

“Then in 2014, I packed up my family and moved to Australia — opening a store in Casula later that year.”

Mr Koury said his business model went through some major adjustments in 2016, after feedback from consumers from his pilot store.

Initially, Little Caesars didn’t have the delivery service, and they also served a pizza “too big” for Australian consumers.

“We needed to launch a fleet of scooters because delivery is so big here,” he said.

“Customers also complained that our sizing was too big, there was waste, so we changed our pizza from 14-inches to 12-inches, and lowered our price for Pepperoni and Cheese to just $5.”

Little Caesars Hot-N-Ready pizza offering means consumers can get their 12-inch pizza in just 30 seconds. Source: News Corp Australia

Little Caesars Hot-N-Ready pizza offering means consumers can get their 12-inch pizza in just 30 seconds.Source:News Corp Australia

 

Australia has become hot property for American fast food chains looking to expand their empire.

In 2016, controversial burger chain Carl’s Jr. opened their first Australian store on the NSW Central Coast.

The chain, which is known for it’s over-the-top burgers and sides, already operates in more than 30 countries.

At the time of opening, Carl’s Jr. had the vision of setting up more than 300 restaurants over 10-15 years.

To date, the chain has just two stores in the country.

Since its inception in 1948, burger chain In-N-Out has gained a cult following all over the world for its simple but tasty burgers.

Based out of Irvine, near Los Angeles, In-N-Out outlets can be found all over California. It’s also expanded to outlets in Arizona, Nevada, Utah and Oregon.

And while the chain has no intention on moving permanently to our shores, they have ‘popped-up’ in several establishments across Sydney over the years — causing burger-mania in its wake.

Just last month, the chain set up shop in Surry Hills, where obsessive burger lovers lined up hours ahead to get their hands on a burger.

From a nutrition standpoint, Australia has one of the highest obesity counts in the world — with almost two in three adults either overweight or obese.

That’s more than 10% higher than in 1995.

With consumers shifting away from fast food options, and into healthier alternatives to combat our growing waistline — Mr Koury believes his offering still has a place in the market.

“We make our dough from scratch, and never use concentrated tomatoes in our sauce,” he said.

“We are always exploring new products, and are working on a salad concept within our stores. “But from a nutrition standpoint, we take measures to make our pizza healthier — by not using oil in the pan, and having corn meal instead, and by not adding MSG to our pizzas.

“So when I look at pizza, and people say its horrible for you — we aren’t selling it as an every day option. It should be a fun food, and a treat.”

Red Rooster says home delivery a silver bullet

from news.com.au

 

IT’S the year of the Rooster, and not just for the Chinese.

Red Rooster, the ageing chicken brand founded 45 years ago in Western Australia, is undergoing its very own cultural revolution, with plans for a major expansion into NSW and Victoria as it sets its sights on Domino’s in the home delivery market.

Chief executive Chris Green, who joined two years ago after nearly three decades at McDonald’s, has kicked off a massive transformation program, refurbishing ageing stores, rolling out a fleet of 400 distinctive red delivery cars, and launching a loyalty program which has already signed up 300,000 members.

With 360 stores, Mr Green plans to open 15 to 20 new locations every year out to 2020. Red Rooster is now turning over $480 million in revenue and is on track to hit $500 million this financial year off sales growth of more than 5 per cent.

“This financial year we’re going to have the strongest growth for a long time,” he said. “The previous year was probably three to four per cent, but the last two years we’ve been outpacing the industry.”

Delivery, he said, has been the key to Red Rooster’s new-found success. Launched two years ago in Sydney’s Baulkham Hills, delivery has expanded to 240 stores and now accounts for 10 to 30 per cent of sales, the majority of which has been incremental growth.

“We refer to it as the ‘silver bullet’ internally, it’s massive,” Mr Green said.

He said while Domino’s had dominated the delivery market, “Woolworths and Coles don’t deliver roast chickens, so there’s sort of a hole in the market”.

“The growth has been amazing,” he said.

“It’s introduced new people to the brand, whereas in the past they might have driven past some of our locations, which maybe didn’t look so good on the outside. Probably a key part of it is the red delivery car. These shiny red cars are all around the neighbourhood of the franchisee providing great marketing.”

Red Rooster has invested around $1.5 million developing its own online ordering system, as well as partnering with Menulog. “People are discovering Red Rooster on Menulog, and it might be either the first time they’ve had it, or they haven’t had it for a long time,” he said.

The new store push will be focused on inner-city areas in Sydney and Melbourne, where the brand has traditionally had difficulty finding drive-through sites. Most of the prime real estate is taken up by McDonald’s.

 

A new, smaller-format store in the style of Domino’s or Subway shopfronts, will solve that problem. “In Sydney, there are actually about two million Sydneysiders that can’t access Red Rooster,” Mr Green said.

“But this new model, because it’s reliant on delivery, it opens up a lot of new areas.”

Franchisees’ capital expenditure for the small-format store is around $350,000 to $400,000, compared with costs in excess of $750,000 for a typical drive-through location. Rental costs are also much about half those of a drive-through, generally under $100,000.

“We’re targeting $20,000-plus per week in sales [at the new stores], but our first location in Goulburn has already exceeded all expectations,” Mr Green said.

Going forward, the business is aiming for a 50/50 split of drive-throughs and small-format shopfronts. Currently the business has 300 drive-throughs, 30 smaller stores and 30 stadium or airport locations.

“When we can get a drive-through that will always be an option, but in built-up areas like the northern beaches or inner-city Sydney, those locations are very difficult to source,” he said.

Mr Green said Red Rooster was taking lessons from Domino’s, even rolling out GPS tracking to more than 40 restaurants. “They’ve absolutely been the leader but I would say in the last two years we’ve almost become off the charts as a strong competitor,” he said.

“There are some things that Domino’s does that are gimmicks, we’re probably a bit more focused on the customer.”

‘FAILED TO EVOLVE’

The Red Rooster brand has “enormous opportunity” that has largely been missed over the past decade or so, Mr Green said.

“I’d always admired Red Rooster as a brand,” he said on his decision to leave McDonald’s. “It probably was at its height in the ‘80s and ‘90s and it went through a bit of a decline after that.

“They were owned by Coles in the ‘80s and ‘90s and that’s when the brand did really well. It had that parent that was able to guide it both from a brand and real estate perspective.

“But from around 2000 to really about three years ago, it failed to evolve, and mainly that was a lack of reinvestment in the restaurants, so a lot of restaurants did become rundown.

“So it was a big attraction — a well established Australian brand with lots of opportunity to capture and grow.”

Mr Green said the first thing he did when he came on board was work with franchisees to refurbish the ageing stores. In his first year the company worked with franchisees — Red Rooster only has 10 company-owned stores — to refurbish 75 restaurants, when in the previous two or three years there had been fewer than 10.

“A lot of the signage was replaced, the exteriors were painted, gardens were cleaned up, the dining rooms, floors, settings, tables and ceilings [were redone],” he said.

“So that was big. That signalled a lot of change to people that had maybe stopped visiting Red Rooster because the competitors looked better.”

Menu changes, including salads, updating the 30-year-old coleslaw recipe, and introducing new seasonings, have also had an impact, he said.

Overall, the Year of the Rooster is looking big for parent company Quick Service Restaurant Holdings, which also owns Oporto and Chicken Treat.

QSRH was bought by private equity firm Archer Capital for $450 million in 2011. Archer is mulling either a stock market float or sale of the business later year.

Mr Green said if he had to bet, he would say an IPO was more likely. “But it’s open to both,” he said. “The most important thing is we have differentiated strategies for all three brands and different target markets.”

QSRH’s three brands have a 25.4 per cent market share of the $2.9 billion takeaway chicken shop industry in Australia, according to IBISWorld, behind KFC operator Yum! Brands which has 41.6 per cent market share.

Restaurant group Collins Foods, which also operates a number of KFC restaurants in Queensland, WA and NT, has a 15.5 per cent market share, while Nando’s sits on 10.8 per cent.

“Like many fast-food providers, [QSRH] has faced increasing competition from new forms of fast food over the past five years,” IBISWorld industry analyst Andrew Ledovskikh said. “Profit has remained relatively steady despite weak revenue growth, as a focus on franchising revenue has supported profit margins.”

Connect Menulog, Eatnow, Grubhub, Eat24 orders to your GetSwift account

Step 1.

Go to your settings > Advanced Options and enter the email address you will send Grubhub or Menulog orders to import@getswift.co

 

Step 2.

Go to your templates section and create a new template with the pick up address of your restaurant and make sure you name the template with exactly the same spelling as it is listed on your Menulog or Grubhub order emaill that you will be forwarding to GetSwift

e.g. The Grubhub restaurant is called Joe's Pizza then make sure you save the template as Joe's Pizza

 

 

Step 3.

Now go to your email inbox and forward the menulog, grubhub, eatnow, Eat24 order email to import@getswift.co

 

Step 4.

The order will be created within 30 seconds on your account and you will see it appear in your map!

GetSwift to raise $5m and list start-up GetSwift on ASX

From Financial Review (Yolanda Redrup)

Former Melbourne AFL footballer Joel MacDonald will take his logistics management platform, GetSwift, public via an ASX listing to raise $5 million.

Unlike most early stage businesses that go to the public markets as a source of capital, though, GetSwift does not need the cash.

GetSwift chairman, former media executive and Blue Chilli president Bane Hunter, said the capital raising was aimed at proving the long-term viability of the business to prospective customers, who expressed concerns about its cash levels when doing due diligence.

"So the primary reason for listing, for us, is the issue of visibility and governance. Then, heart on hand, we wanted to show that you can use Australian institutions to leverage your global penetration," Mr Hunter said.

Joel MacDonald in 2012 during an AFL match, a game that taught him to get back up after a knockdown and do it for your team. Sebastian Costanzo

The start-up has constructed a series of algorithms which let businesses optimise delivery routes, streamline their dispatching and task assignment, send branded alerts automatically to customers about their orders, and capture digital proof of delivery via photos or signatures.

Mr MacDonald founded GetSwift off the back of his experiences running the delivery start-up Liquorun.

"As it continued to grow and expand around Australia we ran into the same challenges: where is the driver; who to dispatch jobs to; and how to optimise the most efficient route," he said.

"Technology can solve all of these problems, but when we looked at it from a 30-foot overview, we realised it was a much larger problem on a global scale. But unless you have the budget of an Uber or a Domino's, most companies can't solve these problem profitably."

While GetSwift started off as a product to help manage Liquorun's logistics, it quickly emerged as a stronger business in its own right and won the interest of major US business Whole Foods, who invited the company to the US.

In the past 16 months the business has grown from nothing, to being used in more than 50 countries by companies such as Instacart, Lion Nathan and Shopwings.

In the last financial year it banked $348,404 in revenue, and through the listing it will be valued at just over $25 million.

Listing rules

The company is tracking towards a December listing. Also in December, the ASX is considering introducing tighter listing rules, meaning companies with less than $5 million in net tangible assets and also valued at less than $20 million would be blocked from the exchange.

GetSwift clears these hurdles.

"We've reviewed these requirements and we pass both tests, so for us, we think it is a positive outcome for the whole ecosystem," Mr Macdonald said.

GetSwift has an issue price of 20¢ a share and Cygnet Capital has been managing the raise.

The company also completed a pre-IPO capital raise of $1.5 million earlier this year, which was reported by Street Talk.

While the company has just filed its prospectus, it has already completed its roadshow and Mr Hunter said there was a high degree of interest.

"We met with a number of institutions, private wealth funds and also brokers, and universally we were well received," he said. "I've been on a number of roadshows from the other sides, and it could not have gone better."

Mr MacDonald said he was aware of the challenges young companies faced in going public, such as investor scrutiny when the business model is still being finalised, but he was prepared to tackle them head on.

"It comes down to our communication. What you see and what we say is what you get. Every change we make will be raw, honest and directly communicated with the public. That's how you build trust and transparency with shareholders," he said.

"I was an average footballer. But moving into this game that we call business, you get knocked ... and it's not just for two hours, it's 24 hours a day. I built the ability to take those knockdowns and get back up and do it for your team, your fans and even Australia.

Trading Valley for Alley: an Aussie founder’s guide to moving to New York

So, you want to move your startup to the US? Well, you have a choice.

You can head on over to the typical place to base your company: Silicon Valley, or you can follow our route and head to the Big Apple, the undisputed epicentre of business in the US.

There are distinct advantages to going east instead of west. Dubbed Silicon Alley, New York’s startup scene has blossomed over the past couple of years on the back of it being a hub for collaboration between startups and America’s largest companies.

For instance, by moving to New York as opposed to Silicon Valley, we were able to secure multiple deals not just with US companies but also European, South American and emerging markets to grow our global delivery logistics platform.

But it’s not an easy move. The sitcom Silicon Valley details – with some degree of accuracy – the tropes and tribulations of the Valley. But there’s very little out there on New York’s startup sector, and how you balance living and working in one of the world’s busiest cities

So, off the back of our experiences, here are our most practical top tips for cracking the scene and giving your business the best chance to succeed in New York and the East Coast of the US.

Before you move, jump on the Australians in New York Facebook page – it will help you find an affordable place to live

What’s the hardest part about moving to New York? It’s not finding contacts or talent for your company. It’s finding an affordable place to live.

Whatever way you slice it, living in New York is expensive. And it’s tough to find a bargain apartment from a distance ‘in a neighborhood you would want to live’ – unless you are willing to pay an agent up to $7000 to find one for you. So consider jumping on this Australians in New York Facebook page straight away. One of its main functions is connecting Australians with affordable living arrangements.

Also, consider where you want to live in New York. Its transport systems – both public transport and ridesharing networks – are excellent. Living a mere 15 minutes further away from where you are working could save you thousands and land you a more spacious pad.

Finding a place to work? Consider these hubs and coworking spaces

Unless you already have some cash behind you and have already arranged an office, you’re going to want to find a good cafe or public space to work from when you first arrive.

This WorkFrom community site provides a really good map of WiFi cafes across the city. Below are a few of our personal favourites:

  • Freehold in Williamsburg
  • Hotel Lobby of Marlton Hotel
  • Soho House Meatpacking & Ludlow
  • Standard East Hotel
  • Cafe Orlin in East Village
  • New York Public Library

The last one is easily a favourite spot. But beware, you can’t take phone calls.

If you are looking for a coworking space try The FarmNeueHouse, and New Work City. They can fit you out with a casual spot for a price.

Network, network, network

You’ll find plenty of like-minded entrepreneurs in New York, but it’s a big city, so the trick is all about finding them.

Coworking spaces are a great place to start, so while you may not want to pay for a desk, you do get the added benefit of networking if you invest in one.

There are a few other key meetups, however, that you should consider. One of the best – and free – is DUNY or the Down Under New York Tech Meetup. It’s growing in influence. Financial Services minister Kelly O’Dwyer and Victorian Small Business and Innovation minister Philip Dalidakis have addressed this group in the past six months.

If you are looking to move further up the chain and network with like-minded professionals, then consider a membership at the SOHO House. It’s exclusive on the basis that it looks for people with unique backgrounds rather than high net worth. It’s also global, so there’s that added benefit.

Keep in mind that in New York, you may have hundreds of acquaintances but only one or two might be true mates. It’s a big city, but it can be lonely.

Timezones are a killer, be ready to work late – and don’t move over early in the year

Get ready to put in some long days if you are still doing business back in Australia. Just as your New York business day comes to end, Australia starts waking up.

Conference calls and Skype meetings between your 6pm to midnight become a very normal routine for an Aussie techie living in New York.

Managing your New York day routine and schedule is the key to making this work. It’s true that New York never sleeps, so you’ll never be without a place to eat or something to do afterwards if you do burn the midnight oil. Business in New York does not stop on weekends so don’t be surprised if you get emails on a Sunday, with a response expected the same day.

Speaking of timezones: do yourself a favour and don’t make a New Years resolution to move your office to New York at the start of 2017. It’s freezing in February. The best time to move and acclimatise is March through October.

Trade coffee meeting for phone calls – and when you do meet, leave the right impression

Australians love to get things done over a coffee. In New York, the best you’ll likely wrangle initially is a 20 minute phone call.

Typically, the New York lifestyle is based around trying to cram as much into each day as possible. Phone calls play well into this dynamic. In New York, business relationships get built over time and are mostly based on success.

If you do finally meet in person, keep your appearance in mind. Execs and New Yorkers alike tend to gauge your status by looking at, in no particular order, your shoes, your watch, and your grooming. You don’t have to dress like a fashion model. Just be mindful that there is a larger focus on appearance and expertise in New York than in other cities.

If you don’t do anything else: get a local involved with your company before you move

One way to avoid a lot of grief and cultural shell-shock when you move over to the US is to partner with a New Yorker, or at least a US citizen.

Thanks to having our current chairman, Bane Hunter on board before I moved, I learned the easy way not navigate the complexities of the US market including minor details, like which public holidays Americans are willing to talk shop on. On some holidays, like Thanksgiving, they prefer not to be disturbed.

But his help extended beyond understanding cultural pleasantries. We landed our first enterprise deal on the back of Bane’s relationships in New York.

Adapting to New York is always going to be a challenge, but a familiar face and some grassroots knowledge can give you the edge you need to succeed.

Image: Joel MacDonald. Source: Supplied.

GetSwift closes $1.5M pre-IPO raise

 

From Financial Review (Anthony Macdonald)

Chinese real-estate portal Juwai, which has completed a $10 million pre-initial public offering raising, is targeting a local float late this year.

This column understands the latest raising was supported by local and Hong Kong-based institutional investors and high net worth individuals. Juwai, which connects Chinese property buyers with sellers in other parts of the world, is aiming to raise about $30 million for its run at the ASX.  

Brokers Baillieu Holst and Evans & Partners managed the pre-IPO raising of convertible notes to investors, as revealed by Street Talk last month.  The notes convert into shares at the time of listing.

Despite a clampdown in Australia in some areas of foreign lending, the Juwai business continues to grow in its key markets.

 

Elsewhere, boutique corporate advisory firm Cygnet Capital is finalising a pre-IPO funding round of $1.5 million for GetSwift, a smart delivery platform that facilitates the management of drivers, dispatch tasks and track goods delivery in real-time.

The funding round to a select group of investors, is said to have been well received, and the company is targeting an ASX listing to raise at least $5 million.