Goldbelly founder and CEO Joe ArielSource: Goldbelly Like DoorDash and Grubhub, Goldbelly is one of the beneficiaries of the abrupt shift in behavior. It’s almost doubled its restaurant and customer count on its website this year, with establishments like Shake Shack, the burger chain founded by Meyer, joining its ranks. Including Momofuku, the company has nearly 700 restaurants listed on its marketplace.“Many partners who were interested but somewhat reluctant have now embraced giving the platform a chance and said to us that they couldn’t believe they hadn’t done it sooner,” Ariel said.‘Gravy seals’ hunt for regional cravesBut Goldbelly also has some key differences from the third-party delivery apps that work with local restaurants. It ships food items anywhere in the country, rather than being bound by a two- or three-mile radius. Restaurants have the freedom to fulfill their orders during lulls, like mid-afternoon or at midnight, when the kitchen is closed to takeout and delivery customers.- Advertisement – The company also works with the restaurants to decide on the price that the consumer pays, which ultimately includes the platform’s transaction fees and the hefty expense of overnight shipping the food anywhere in the country. The food can come frozen, already assembled or as parts of a meal kit to cook the dish easily.A more frequent treatUltimately, the New York bagels or Philadelphia cheesesteaks will cost more than if a customer bought them in person. But the service is for consumers who find themselves far flung from the comfort food they want to eat. And as the current crisis restricts travel and some consumers decamp to the suburbs, they are willing to pay the premium price. The service has also transitioned from being used for special occasions to something sought out more frequently.“As the world has changed, it’s become much more of a weekly and monthly event,” Ariel said.The fourth quarter is typically Goldbelly’s busiest time of the year, thanks to the holidays, according to Ariel. The approach of Thanksgiving means an influx of orders for pies, specialty side dishes and turduckens.“This year, it’s going to be a different level because people aren’t traveling to see their families,” Ariel said.Goldbelly customers are buying multiple items to ship to different people, creating their own virtual Thanksgiving dinners via Zoom. Corporate employers are looking to give their workers and clients Goldbelly’s meal kits and virtual cooking classes in place of in-person office parties.Of course, the pandemic is also introducing new challenges to Goldbelly. Vaccine makers are worried about potential delays in their rollouts due to a shortage of dry ice. Goldbelly’s merchants use the solid form of carbon dioxide for shipping some of their items, like ice cream, across the country overnight.Goldbelly has an entire department devoted to brainstorming how to keep food items frozen — or at least cold — before they arrive to customers.“It’s something we’re keeping our eyes opened for, but we have a few different approaches to attacking that before it becomes more of an issue,” Ariel said, adding that the majority of Goldbelly orders do not use dry ice.For Goldbelly and the rest of the world, a vaccine also means a return to traveling, dining inside restaurants and all of the other occasions that were abandoned during the pandemic. But Ariel thinks that consumers will continue to order from Goldbelly as frequently as they are now.“We believe that the nationwide delivery of your favorite foods is going to continue to be a value proposition that’s really exciting for a lot of people, especially those that experienced it and made a deeper emotional connection with our brand and the platform during this time,” Ariel said. – Advertisement – And it’s the restaurants, rather than Goldbelly, that are responsible for creating and shipping their food items. The business model means that Goldbelly is profitable, according to Ariel.But eateries also benefit from joining the e-commerce site. Ariel said that some restaurants are seeing higher sales volumes on Goldbelly than from their dining rooms before the pandemic.The pandemic introduced another facet to the Goldbelly experience: live cooking classes with famous chefs like Daniel Boulud. The classes are free with the purchase of the related meal kit.Goldbelly uses a team of scouts, internally known as the “gravy seals,” to scour the country and social media for restaurants beloved by their customers or offering unique regional specialties. Eateries on the platform run the gamut from nationally known establishments to mom-and-pop restaurants. – Advertisement – Goldbelly is adding chef David Chang’s Momofuku to its national delivery service as the coronavirus pandemic drives customers and restaurants to the e-commerce site in droves.CEO Joe Ariel founded Goldbelly in 2013, when he was living in New York City and couldn’t find a local restaurant to meet his hankering for Nashville hot chicken or Southern-style biscuits. It’s since raised more than $33 million in funding, and its latest round@m, in 2018, was led by restaurateur Danny Meyer’s Enlightened Hospitality Investments.Prior to the pandemic, Goldbelly was adding restaurants to the platform at a steady clip. But as lockdowns went into place across the United States, eateries that had previously eschewed delivery services and takeout had to pivot.- Advertisement – Customers dine at Momofuku’s outdoor seating in the East Village as the city continues Phase 4 of re-opening following restrictions imposed to slow the spread of coronavirus on September 26, 2020 in New York City.Alexi Rosenfeld | Getty Images
RelatedPosts COVID-19: NCAA to revoke erring airlines licence over non-compliance FRSC to Schools: We’ll arrest, prosecute drivers who flout COVID-19 rules FG sensitises stakeholders on safe school reopening template A former Super Eagles Head Coach, Samson Siasia, is lamenting the postponement of his match-fixing allegation hearing slated for Lausanne, Switzerland on March 19 due to the prevailing COVID-19 pandemic. The disease, which is currently ravaging Europe, US, Asia and other parts of the world, has forced the Court of Arbitration for Sport to postpone Siasia’s invitation to the European country indefinitely. Speaking in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Lagos on Thursday, Siasia described the postponement of his invitation as sad. According to him, being well and healthy in these trying times is more important. COVID-19, known also as coronavirus, has struck the global community with Europe currently having the lion’s share of people killed so far by the virus. It will be recalled that FIFA had handed a lifetime ban on Siasia, 52, in August 2019 for alleged match-fixing. Switzerland is currently on lockdown because of the disease and was listed among 13 countries whose citizens had been banned by the Federal Government from entering Nigeria. Siasia said: “It is sad, honestly, but there is nothing anybody can do at this moment other than to pray that this virus disappears. “Being alive is the most important thing, although being able to work is important, but we have to stay alive first to make the money.” Siasia, however, pleaded with CAS to grant him permission to continue coaching, pending when his case would be heard after the March 19 scheduled date for the hearing. He said: “I think it will be kind and fair of them if CAS will allow me to coach, pending when moving around will be safe again.” In the same vein, Siasia’s associate, Waidi Akanni, who was also Siasia’s former teammate during their active days as footballers, urged CAS to allow Siasia to continue with his coaching career, pending a new date for the hearing. Akanni said: “Nobody knows when the coronavirus will be eradicated. “That’s like putting his life on hold. “This is sad as it is, but the only fair thing to do is to allow him coach until a new date is fixed. “This is his life. “Most likely the only thing he knows how to do. “We can only appeal that he is given a soft-landing until the coronavirus thing blows away.” Siasia was a 1994 Africa Cup of Nations winner with the Super Eagles in Tunisia. He also played in Nigeria’s maiden appearance at USA ’94 World Cup, where he scored a goal against a Diego Maradona-led Albiceleste of Argentina. The former striker played over 50 times for Nigeria, scoring 16 goals. As a coach, he led Nigeria’s U-20 and U-23 sides to continental successes in 2005 and 2015 respectively. He also guided the U-20s to a runner-up finish at the 2005 World Youth Championships (as it was then known) in the Netherlands. Siasia is the most decorated African football coach at the Olympics, winning silver at the Beijing Games in 2008 and bronze at the 2016 Games in Rio. NAN.Tags: CASCOVID-19Federal GovernmentFIFASamson Siasia
The USC Roski School of Art and Design last week announced the addition of a two-year MFA Design program for Fall 2018. The new Roski campus will offer a Designer in Residence studio for students to learn through a behind-the-scenes perspective from renowned designers about their creative processes. Photo from USC News.USC Roski Dean Erica Muhl told USC News that this new program will be housed in the AT MATEO complex in downtown Los Angeles’ Arts District. According to the USC News release, the program will be centered around experimental design, as well as teaching methods and social practices in the art industry. However, the MFA students will also have the opportunity to take electives that are offered by schools across the University to enhance their studies.“USC continues to integrate with the extraordinary city we’re part of,” Provost Michael Quick told USC News. “Roski’s new facility places our design community right in the heart of Los Angeles’ dynamic arts scene for a learning experience that can’t be replicated anywhere else.”Set to open this summer, the new Roski campus will feature an open concept design studio, classrooms and collaboration spaces. In particular, the campus will also offer a Designer in Residence studio, which will immerse students in a behind-the-scenes look at the creative processes that world-renowned designers undergo for projects. Additionally, the campus will implement “state-of-the-art equipment and technologies,” according to the USC News release.“Not only will we benefit greatly from being located in the vibrant Arts District, but we will have future scholars working in profound ways with the city around them,” Quick told USC News.The MFA program will be led by Roski Vice Dean of Design Haven Lin-Kirk and aims to maximize every student’s individual experience in the studio by implementing an instructional model “focused on critical dialogue.” Students will work closely with Roski faculty members, as well as a community of professional designers, artists, critics and curators that lie outside of the USC campus. These people will be participating in the Visiting Designer and Designer in Residence forums, which offer students the opportunity to engage with leading figures in the art and design industry. “Our program, centrally located in one of the world’s most diverse, dynamic and influential cities — and an undisputed capital of the arts and culture — will not only graduate practicing designers, but also scholars, thinkers, teachers and bold visionaries who will apply design strategy to the world’s most intractable problems,” Muhl said to USC News.There are several aspects of the MFA program curriculum outside of courses, such as the Global Art and Design initiative, which encourages students to think globally across disciplines through a two-seminar series that provides an in-depth look at the histories, theories and practices of global art and design.With the new MFA program, Roski looks to turn a new page on their graduate programming. In Spring 2015, seven graduate students that made up Roski’s class of 2016 withdrew from a previously launched MFA program and expressed disappointment with the program’s funding and curriculum. The students claimed false promises had been made by the University, such as scholarships that would cover 82 percent of their tuition that were to be granted following their first year in the program. In a statement published online, the students attributed the cut to program funding to Muhl and criticized her for her experience with visual arts.