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The Wall Street Journal has an interesting story about changes taking place in the restaurant industry, driven by the growth of the takeout sector.

In the restaurant business, apparently, companies like Grubhub and Just Eat have provided “ordering platforms for restaurants. They make money by charging restaurants a cut of orders placed through their platforms. The restaurants, for the most part, handle getting the food to the customer.”

Now, though, they are being challenged by food-delivery specialists such as Uber Eats and Deliveroo that “have built restaurant marketplaces of their own, while also handling the physical delivery on behalf of restaurants.” Now, the “traditional platforms need to invest in delivery or risk having their lunch eaten. This raises issues: Delivery is a much more capital-heavy, lower-margin business than creating a marketplace.”

But there’s a next step: “In time, this could lead to a much more profound disruption of the restaurant industry, as  so-called cloud kitchens, without the cost of prime retail space, work exclusively for online orders.”

In another restaurant-related story, Bloomin’ Brands is taking two of its restaurant concepts - Outback Steakhouse and Carrabba’s Italian Grill - are combining them in a new format, Outback & Carrabba’s Express.

The first one opened last month in Tampa, Florida. The unique angle - it “offers strictly takeout, delivery and catering — and no dine-in.”
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