With more and more people are ordering food at home – a trend that gained momentum at a time when it was safer to eat at home than in restaurants – the spread of so-called “haunted kitchens” is continuing rapidly. These kitchens are focused on takeout orders and need a layer of technology to keep things running smoothly.
“When COVID started, all restaurants had to have a relationship with technology to survive, but the importance of this relationship has been greatly magnified by the rise of the omicron variant,” said Nabeel Alamgir, co-founder and CEO of lunch box, gotechbusiness.com told via email. “This is the hardest battle restaurants have ever faced in recent memory.”
Lunchbox saw an opportunity, raising $20 million in 2020 and then $50 million in February. In this post, I look at the deck of cards the company used to raise its $50 million round and bring on board an impressive cadre of investors.
We’re looking for more unique pitch decks to break down, so if you’d like to submit your own pitch decks, here’s how.
Slides in this card game
Lunchbox raised its $50 million Series B with a very tight 15-slide game, which the company kindly shared with us. The entire deck is unabridged, making it a particularly great deck to learn from. Let’s dive in:
- cover slip
- Lunchbox is the operating system… — mission slide
- Best Emerging Brands – Customer Slide
- Third party companies are expensive – problem slide
- Building your own ordering system – problem slide
- All in one solution – solution dia
- Result: 3rd party killer — impact slide
- Case Study: Clean Juice — Customer Dive Slide
- Meeting guests where they are — slide customer journey
- Product Driven Organization – Product Roadmap Slide
- An Exploding Ghost Market – Market Trend Slide
- Competitive positioning — match summary slide
- Toast vs Lunchbox — Deep Dive Slide Competition
- Future Landscape — Market Trend Slide
- Let’s get cooking – contact slide
Three things to love
This is going to be one of those times when I regret limiting myself to writing about three things I enjoyed in a pitch deck.
This deck is a masterclass in how a company can map out its story and show how it is presented. Lunchbox successfully explains how it affects the lives of its customers without delving too deeply into the product features. It capably paints a picture of how exactly it stands out in a fiercely competitive landscape.
The deck also tells us how Lunchbox can see a clear path to an exit without making that explicit. Very well done indeed. Let’s highlight a few highlights!
Illustrate the impact
About halfway down the field, Lunchbox plays a card – or a slide, if you will – that really rams home raison d’être. The slide tells the story of how Lunchbox helps a customer — juice bar Clean Juice†
Click “order now” on the Clean Juice site and you will be taken to a beautiful, white-label version of Lunchbox, where you have the opportunity to choose a point of sale near you and place an order. That’s one layer of this slide – it’s best to believe that any investor worth their salt would try placing an order with Clean Juice to see the product in action.
Example: As I write this teardown, I am saddened that the nearest Clean Juice store is too far away to deliver to my home. If Lunchbox is smart, they’d notice I’ve provided my address and they’d feed it back to Clean Juice to tell them there might be interest in a retail outlet in Oakland, California.
Now, as an investor, all I need to know is that the product works, that the customers find real value in it, and that they are willing to pay for it.
The other layer shows the impact Lunchbox has had on Clean Juice with hard facts, figures and figures – the way of storytelling that investors value most.
A 31% increase in order frequency, a 55% increase in annual spend per user and a 41% increase in digital sales per point of sale, plus a 20% increase in new users year over year? Those are unbelievable numbers for any business and it would certainly be enough to make me lean and pay attention if I were running a chain of food stores. More importantly, if Lunchbox is able to draw a clear parallel between the tools and services it provides and the surge in traffic its customers are seeing, it will have incredible sales material.
For me, the best thing about this slide is that it doesn’t go too deep into exactly how it achieves these numbers. That will no doubt be a topic of discussion later in the pitching process. Now, as an investor, all I need to know is that the product works, that the customers find real value in it, and that they are willing to pay for it.
These numbers tell that story in a powerful way.
Why now? This is why now!
The best slides rarely whisper; they call.
My god, slide 11 is a screaming slide. Let me be clear: I wouldn’t have designed this slide that way in any way. It’s three different slides posing as one – it addresses macroeconomic market trends (70% of restaurants have used a haunted kitchen and 69% said they plan to open more), the moat/defensibility of the product (“patented product”) and gives us the raw numbers.
The last bit is my favorite. In the top right corner, the company hides the most impressive stat in the entire deck in muted colors, almost shy to tell us it has an incredible growth trajectory. It grew 541% from 2020 to 2021 and another 365% from 2021 to 2022 to nearly $15 million in annual recurring revenue (ARR).
If I were to present this company to investors, these numbers would be on the second slide in the deck, and I’d be screaming really loud indeed: We’ve found a repeatable business model, and we’re raising $50 million to lean heavily on it. gas.
It’s against this context that I love this slide so much. It’s not how I would have done things, but any investor reading this would lean forward and pay close attention. It’s a microphone drop, a modest boast, a “Hey, we’ve got something to defend in an exploding market, and we’re holding on tight as this rocketship disappears into the stratosphere.”
What this slide tells me is that Lunchbox should to attempt not be hugely successful. And that, ladies, gentlemen and anyone who doesn’t identify as either, is how you throw a Serie B round – explain how your success is inevitable.
Does it have to be the truth? Absolute; you can not lie† But what you? can do is tell your company’s story in a powerful way and let that be the opening salvo for discussion between you and your investors.
A humble brag plus a competitive overview
If you’re not used to reading it, Alex has a fantastic analysis of the company’s S-1, but Lunchbox did a great job pulling out the most notable details for investors to get a better look at.
Knowing that Toast exists and has a current market cap of $8 billion in a market where Lunchbox can claim it has access to a potentially bigger market is a pretty smooth way to tell this part of the story.
To me, this slide basically screams, “Hey, we’re on an IPO!” Given the current size of $50 million in fundraising, I wouldn’t be surprised if part of the strategy after this round is to hire a team of finance people, a bankers’ wunch (yes, a “wunch” is a collective term for bankers; don’t think too hard about it) and bolster the organization’s operations to cement a solid growth trajectory.
If Lunchbox can do all that, an IPO may be the logical next step. Alternatively, it can spend the money on hyper-scaling its growth and then pick up a Series C to fund the IPO process.
One thing’s for sure: This slide puts a stake in the ground for Lunchbox to prepare for explosive growth — and makes it perfectly reasonable based on predicates from competitors in the market.
In the rest of this teardown, we’ll take a look at three things Lunchbox could have improved or done differently, along with the full pitch deck!