- Slice has secured $40 million in Series D funding, led by Cross Creek, with additional investments from 01 Advisors, KKR, GGV Capital and Primary Ventures, according to a press release sent to Restaurant Dive.
- The latest funding round will give Slice access to the expertise of former Twitter CEO Dick Costolo and former COO Adam Bain of 01 Advisors as the company expands its vertical platform, adds to its product portfolio and scales its Slice Accelerate program, which offers select restaurants access to $15,000 worth of technology and services.
- The investment follows the company’s launch of an integrated point-of-sales tool called Slice Register and a loyalty program Slice Rewards. The company also previously received $43 million in Series C funding in May 2020.
The additional funding will help Slice continue to provide tools and resources to allow independent pizzerias compete with tech-centric companies like Domino's, Ilir Sela, Slice CEO and founder, said. More than 75% of Domino's sales volume comes from e-commerce, with efficiencies that has helped increase how much people order, Sela said. Domino's locations now make about $1.2 million in sales each year, he said.
"We believe independent restaurants, by default, are at a disadvantage because they're independent," Sela said. "We want them to maintain their independence … but we believe we need to turn independents into one big community. We want to unite local pizza, and we want to realize the same economies of scale."
Slice is focusing on providing the same technology, brand and resources that big chains benefit from, Sela said. Its Slice Register tool, which launched in March, provides a hub that allows pizza owners to manage customers across its various channels. It also offers insights into what kinds of food customers may want, pricing, delivery and other operational metrics. The company plans to scale this tool across its entire network, Sela said, although he did not disclose a timeline.
Its Slice Rewards loyalty program, which launched in late March, allows customers who order a minimum of $15 to earn points toward rewards, Sela said. In less than a month, restaurant partners are seeing customers order more because of the minimum, he said.
Creating loyalty and providing additional technologies will only benefit independent pizza shops, which saw a boost in weekly sales from $2,000 to $4,000 on average during the pandemic on Slice.
The company is fast approaching 16,000 partners and plans to have over 20,000, Sela said. It anticipates managing over $1 billion in transactions this year. Slice is able to keep delivery costs low because it is vertically integrated and works as a direct partner for pizzerias, of which 85% perform their own deliveries, Sela said. With access to more data, the company can advise merchants on the optimal delivery fee — no more than $2, for example — because that's what the analytics have shown the consumer is willing to pay, he said.