- Jollibee and DoorDash have teamed up to debut a mobile kitchen, according to a press release. The movable restaurant concept opens Sept. 2 in Hamilton, Ontario, in Canada, and allows customers to order food online for pickup or delivery via DoorDash’s or Jollibee’s channels.
- The two companies collaborated on the design of the mobile concept, turning a flatbed trailer into a customized working kitchen with fryers, utility connectivity, storage and refrigeration.
- The introduction of this model should support Jollibee’s plans to open 500 stores in the next five to seven years in the U.S. and Canada. The Filipino quick-service chain currently has about 70 stores throughout North America, and operates more than 5,800 stores in 33 countries.
DoorDash launched its first ghost kitchen in 2019 and has expanded the model since, including through a partnership with Jollibee, which opened its first ghost kitchen in Chicago in 2020. However, the mobile kitchen differs from a traditional ghost kitchen because it allows Jollibee to test out new markets and expand in both existing and new markets without the costs of opening a brick-and-mortar location.
That said, mobile kitchens aren’t necessarily new, nor do they differ too much from food trucks other than relying fully on digital ordering. &pizza deployed such kitchens in 2019 in an effort to expand into new markets, for example. Wendy’s is leveraging Reef’s mobile kitchens to grow its nontraditional footprint.
The difference here is that it marks DoorDash’s first foray into the mobile kitchen model and it won’t likely be its last.
In a statement, Ryan Freeman, DoorDash Canada’s head of enterprise partnerships, said the company has “seen the power of new kitchen models to help restaurants reach more customers and grow sales.” He added the mobile kitchen is an extension of its mission to help merchants grow their business.
The model should also help Jollibee ramp up its presence in North America, not just because it is less costly than a brick-and-mortar location but also because it will enable the brand to quickly learn which markets respond best to its products before expanding further. The companies said the Hamilton location will be open for about six months before traveling to a new North American location to be determined.
In the release, Maribeth Dela Cruz, Jollibee North America president, said the mobile kitchen provides an ideal platform to serve customers in a more flexible capacities, “especially in communities where we don’t yet have a physical store location.”
Further, Jollibee’s partnership with DoorDash, first announced in April 2020, should also help the company achieve its ambitious growth plans. DoorDash has nearly 60% of delivery market share in the U.S. and about 25% in Canada.