LONDON, Oct. 3, 2017 /PRNewswire/ --
- Keith Edelman, former MD of Arsenal Holdings Plc, joins Appetise as Non-Executive Director.
- Simon Smith, former CEO of eBay Australia, joins Appetise as Chairman.
- The appointments come as Appetise is undertaking an IPO.
- Appetise takes on the online takeaway giants with some key value differentiators:
- No transaction fees for consumers when paying online.
- No joining fees for restaurants to be on its platform.
- Lower commission rates charged to restaurants.
- Enables consumers to view and choose restaurants based on their Food Standards Agency hygiene ratings.
Appetise (Holdings) Ltd ("Appetise" or the "Company") (www.appetise.com) has announced the appointment of a former CEO of eBay Australia, Simon Smith, as the Company's Chairman, and Keith Edelman, a former Managing Director of Arsenal Holdings Plc, as a Non-Executive Director.
Keith Edelman has over thirty years' experience in the consumer-facing industries and a number of household names on his CV including directorships of Eurotunnel, Glenmorangie, Safestore, Storehouse/Mothercare, Revolution Bars, and Supergroup. He is best known for his nine years as Managing Director of Arsenal, during which time he oversaw the building of its Emirates stadium (on time and on budget), whilst the club won the Premiership and the FA Cup and reached the finals of the Champions League. During Mr. Edelman's tenure at Arsenal, the club's internet business was turned from a loss to a profit and unique users grew from approximately 350,000 to 3,500,000 per month.
Simon Smith is an experienced leader in the services, internet marketing and online marketplaces spaces. As CEO, he led eBay Australia for eight years, during which time he transformed it from a loss-making business into a dominant presence in Australian e-commerce. Mr. Smith was also a director of Sportsbet, Australia's largest online bookmaker and is the chief executive officer of Nabo Community, Australia's largest private social network for neighbourhoods, funded by Seven West Media, Reinventure and Fairfax. Mr Smith is also chairman at Fusion Payments Asia, where he was involved in the successful sale of the Australian business to Telstra. His executive experience also includes five years running the worldwide Virtual Offices business of Servcorp (ASX: SRV), a global leader in the shared and virtual office space.
Commenting on the appointments, the Company's Chief Executive Officer Konstantine Karampatsos said, "The appointment by Appetise of two such well known business executives demonstrates the potential that the Company has for disrupting the UK online food ordering industry. It also demonstrates the continued appeal of a sector which has experienced explosive growth recently, attracting substantial investment in the UK and elsewhere."
Simon Smith commented, "Appetise has been working on a number of strategic initiatives, including an IPO on the Australian Securities Exchange (the "ASX"). I am glad to be able to apply my Australian experience and the lessons I learnt from leading and turning around eBay Australia, to online food delivery marketplaces, a related market."
Keith Edelman added, "The online food delivery marketplace industry in the UK enjoys substantial margins. Both restaurants and consumers can benefit from low costs of participating in online food delivery marketplaces. Consumers need not pay transaction fees, should be rewarded by a generous loyalty scheme, and should be able to make a fully informed choice when ordering their food online. Restaurants need not pay fees to join or high commissions. I am glad to be able to apply my thirty years of consumer-facing industry experience to this exciting business."
The privately-held Appetise has flown under the radar since its launch in 2008 but has become well-entrenched in the South West and West Midlands. Appetise has approximately 90,000 registered users and 400 restaurants on its platform, with a national footprint and a particularly strong presence in Birmingham. Following an infusion of capital from a New York-based institutional investor last year, Appetise is now taking on the larger competitors in the UK online food ordering industry head-on.
The industry giants, led by Just Eat Plc, wield a substantial amount of market power. Consumers ordering through online platforms typically pay a 50 pence transaction fee when paying online by credit or debit card in addition to the price of the meal. These fees can make it more expensive for consumers to order through an online platform than it would be if they ordered directly from the restaurant. Unlike most other online platforms, Appetise does not charge a card transaction fee to consumers when they pay online, making online ordering no more expensive than ordering directly from the restaurant. Consumers' perks do not end there. Appetise runs a generous loyalty point system, with every order adding to the customer's loyalty point balance for further discounts. This can make ordering through Appetise even cheaper than ordering directly from the restaurant.
Restaurants wishing to join the major online food ordering platforms can pay upfront fees of up to £699, in addition to commissions of up to 14% of the value of the order, a percentage that meaningfully reduces and sometimes wipes out completely the slim profit margins of the restaurants, especially the smaller family run shops. Appetise, with its lean infrastructure, does not charge restaurants joining fees. In addition, the commission rate that Appetise charges to the restaurants does not exceed 10%, which is gentler on the small restaurant business than the industry norm.
The Food Standards Agency assigns a food hygiene rating to restaurants on a scale of zero to five. Most online ordering platforms partner with restaurants regardless of their food hygiene ratings, and do not make information about their partner restaurants' hygiene rating readily available to consumers. Recognising that food safety, quality and hygiene are critical to consumers and that ordering online can make it harder to assess a restaurant, Appetise enables consumers to make fully informed choices by allowing them to view the hygiene ratings of its restaurant partners and to screen their search according to a minimum hygiene rating. This ensures that each consumer can tailor their order to the minimum food hygiene standard that is acceptable for them.
While conventional wisdom suggests that London is the main on-line food ordering market, Appetise is growing rapidly while focusing on the markets outside of London. For instance, in the first three months of this year Appetise doubled the number of restaurants in Birmingham on its platform, and approximately 15% of takeaway restaurants in central Birmingham are now offering online food ordering with Appetise.
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SOURCE Appetise Holdings