Waitr promotes Adam Price as Chris Meaux resigns as CEO
Waitr becomes another major third-party delivery provider partnering with Olo as Waitr’s CEO steps aside. The deal with Olo, a major restaurant digital ordering provider, allows Waitr and Bite Squad to use Olo Rails. As a result, Waitr and Bite Squad app orders will flow directly into the POS of restaurant clients. With the ink on the deal barely dry, Waitr announced today that Founder and Former CEO Chris Meaux is stepping aside. COO Adam Price assumes the top post.
Meaux stepped down as Waitr released its Q2 financial results. Revenue rose more than $35M to $51.3M, but $25.1M of the increase was due to the acquisition of Bite Squad. The loss in Q2 spiked to $24.9M, $17.5M more than the same quarter last year. Waitr acknowledged the delayed integration of Bite Squad and its related expenses.
With the popularity of third-party restaurant delivery, restaurants are increasingly looking for ways to receive orders directly via the POS. Through Olo Rails, restaurants can receive and process orders through partner delivery services and marketplaces.
Additionally, restaurants can publish their menus and receive orders from participating marketplaces. Waitr and New York City-based Olo suggest Olo Rails can provide additional visibility, increase accuracy and drive revenue.
“Teaming up with Olo allows us to increase operational efficiencies for these brands by streamlining orders and simplifying the delivery fulfillment experience, allowing for more efficiently timed and accurate orders,” said Meaux, Waitr founder and chairman.
As Waitr CEO steps aside, COO seeks efficiency, customer loyalty
Founded in 2013, Lake Charles, La.-based Waitr finalized its acquisition of Bite Squad in January for $323M. Together they process orders in underserved markets connected to 700 cities in the United States. Since beginning the company, Waitr has processed over 35 million orders.
“We share Waitr’s passion for leveraging technology to make digital ordering and delivery accessible and simple, for both the restaurant and their guests, and are thrilled to add them as a partner as they continue on their impressive expansion path,” said Marty Hahnfeld, Olo chief customer officer.
As the former Waitr CEO steps down, Price, its former COO, is uniquely positioned to take charge of the company and voiced an energetic confidence during the earnings conference call today. He announced a new pricing structure that rewards restaurants on the platform based on longevity and volume.
Price also reminded investors and analysts that Waitr’s drivers (couriers) are employees and paid per hour, not as contractors. The new CEO will use data analytics to increase orders per drive to leverage driver expenses. Also, Waitr drivers will keep 100 percent of tips, noted Price.
“I look forward to working closely with the entire team and executing on our vision to be the most convenient way to discover, order and serve great food in local communities,” said Waitr’s Price. “Food delivery is in its infancy and having clear market leadership in most of our markets in addition to a well-regarded brand with restaurants, consumers and drivers sets us up well for future growth.”
[Related article: DoorDash to acquire Caviar]
Waitr disclosed there is interest in its business, presumably as an acquisition target. The tech company has hired Evercore and Jeffries as financial advisors to review strategic opportunities.
Photo credit: Waitr
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