The global food and restaurant business is evolving, and investors are pumping billions of dollars into new models called cloud kitchens. A few months ago, a yarn spinner sold the idea for a Kenyan version to investors but wilted in less than a year. However, PieMe, is working put further disruption in Africa’s restaurant space. This time, it’s led by a group of enterprising Ugandan entrepreneurs.
As usual, let’s catch up on some important points:
- The global restaurant business was worth $2.6 trillion in 2022 and is expected to grow to $2.9 trillion in 2022.
- At $352 billion, the food delivery segment is a fast-growing
- Players use three distinct models: Restaurant-to-consumer, platform (app) to consumer, and cloud kitchens. T
- Platform companies are expected to overtake the restaurants that currently dominate the US market.
- In Kenya, restaurants dominate the food delivery market and will keep dominating by 2025.
- The cloud kitchen business model is still growing, and it’s yet untested in the African market.
- Uganda’s PieME is taking an unexpected approach to the restaurant business by helping regularly people turn their home kitchens into cloud kitchens. For food lovers, you get to browse through a social network for different dishes and make orders at restaurants close to your locality.
Before we dive deeper, it would make some sense to understand the motivation behind the creation of PieME.
The inspiration for PieMe
In 2018, two Ugandan friends, Joshua Kainja and John Muhindo, travelled to Kenya. Before the trip, they’d heard tales of delicious Kenyan dishes like the Ugali (Cornmeal), Sukuma Wiki (Collard greens), and Nyama Choma (roasted meat) and wanted to eat from the locals.
The Makarere alumni friends felt what most travellers experienced when moving to a new country; Ignorance of the right places to stay, and the right places to get local food.
“When you’re new in a place, you’d meet more of high-end restaurants and apartments, so that gave us a reason to create PieME, so we can source for accommodation from the locals, and get food from them,” says Kainja, CEO of PieMe.
The friends went back home and carefully crafted a development plan for PieMe. They shortly launched in Kampala, Uganda, as a social network for people travelling across Nairobi, Dodoma, and Uganda, to find lodgings and locally made food, and to help travellers better understand the country’s culture.
However, making this platform a reality was tough. Kainja explains that he had difficulties finding the right talent, Once the team launched the platform, there was a enormous task of getting the right people to see the platform and …….