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The New York Times has a story about restaurant businesses that don’t actually have restaurants, but rather built entirely on delivery. While “many of the delivery-only operations are nascent,” the Times suggests, “their effect may be far-reaching, potentially accelerating people’s turn toward order-in food over restaurant visits and preparing home-cooked meals.”

“Food delivery apps like Uber Eats, DoorDash and Grubhub are starting to reshape the $863 billion American restaurant industry,” the Times writes. “ As more people order food to eat at home, and as delivery becomes faster and more convenient, the apps are changing the very essence of what it means to operate a restaurant.

“No longer must restaurateurs rent space for a dining room. All they need is a kitchen — or even just part of one. Then they can hang a shingle inside a meal-delivery app and market their food to the app’s customers, without the hassle and expense of hiring waiters or paying for furniture and tablecloths. Diners who order from the apps may have no idea that the restaurant doesn’t physically exist.”

The two most popular options among restaurateurs who are embracing the moment - virtual restaurants that are attached to physical establishments, but have dedicated kitchens for the delivery side of the business, and ghost kitchens, operated either individually or on a group basis, that are purely “meal preparation hubs for delivery orders.”
KC's View:
The Times makes the point that “even as delivery apps create new kinds of restaurants, they are hurting some traditional establishments, which already contend with high operating expenses and brutal competition.”

Which actually makes the point - as consumer tastes and desires evolve, you may not be able to afford to be a “traditional establishment.” You have to change with them, and maybe even ahead of them. Fortune favors the bold … though trying to satisfy customers shouldn’t necessarily be the definition of “bold.”