Blink successfully closes $2.1mn Seed Funding Round. But what are their plans for the restaurant business?  

Coming in with fresh funding Blink is on a mission against food aggregators and wants to shake up how restaurant ordering works in Pakistan. 

 Quick commerce platform Blink has successfully closed a $2.1 million Seed funding round. The startup received funding from its existing investors such as Orbit and Startup/SOSV as well as from 500 Global and Global Founders Capital.  

Blink’s business model aims to provide restaurants direct online ordering channels. The concept is that the commissions charged by delivery aggregators are too high to be sustainable for the restaurant ecosystem.

Delivery aggregators are companies that bring many different restaurants and other stores on one platform. That way a person just has to download and access a single application or website and can place orders for different products. In Pakistan, foodpanda is a prominent example of one such food aggregator. 

Blink has actually come out of the delivery aggregator business. The company had originally set out to create a delivery aggregator back in 2018 and launched Eat Mubarak. Despite scaling fast and hitting 3000+ restaurants, 150,000 monthly transactions, and 500 daily active riders in their first two years they encountered problems with the delivery aggregator business model itself. 

“The commissions we, like all other food aggregators, charged our merchants was far too costly for them to scale their businesses. On average, an alarming 30% of merchant revenue was consumed by commissions. Our merchants needed a profitable online ordering platform, one which we were not,” says Blink on their website. 

The idea behind Blink was to enable brick-and-mortar restaurants and supermarkets for direct online ordering and instant deliveries. The company wrapped up Eat Mubarak in mid 2020. Over the last 12 months, Blink has processed 4.5 million orders for its partner restaurants and surpassed $0.5 million in Annual Recurring Revenue. 

To date the company says they have helped over 1200 restaurants across the MENAP region process more than 8 million direct orders. The company has a strong base in Pakistan assisting a number of international restaurant chains. One particular success story is Nandos, which had initially been on food aggregators when the trend for online ordering increased in the country. Since 2021 with the help of Blink Nandos has acquired an online customer base of over 25,000 people. 

While Pakistan is Blink’s stronghold, they also have done business with a number of significant players all over the MENAP region. For example IHOP in Kuwait, Qatar, and Bahrain are all clients. In other middle eastern countries Applebee’s, Tanmiah Chicken, and Sanabel Asalam are also clients. 

It is this growing base in the MENAP region that they hope to expand with this $2.1 million in funding. “The current funding round will enable the company to accelerate their growth in Saudi Arabia, the fastest-growing market in the GCC region, where they have already established an impressive footprint, led by the CEO’s presence in Riyadh,” read their press statement.  

“Restaurants today are struggling with dependence on food delivery aggregators more than ever. Post-Covid, with the sharp increase in the habit of delivery, more than 90% of orders are coming through aggregators where restaurants lose on average 20% margin. Not to mention their inability to access valuable customer data, prohibiting them from any future marketing relationship,” says Syed Sair Ali, Co-founder & CEO of Blink. “Our meaningful work has allowed restaurant brands to win back up to 40% of their aggregator orders through their direct ordering channel, increasing their profitability by 30%,”

“Blink has demonstrated strong commitment towards the Saudi market by establishing their headquarters in Riyadh. Their business model has been proven in other markets and we are excited to see them continue to grow in Saudi Arabia,” says Amal Dokhan, General Partner at 500 Global which is one of the participants of Blink’s seed round. 



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