Technology

Local Kitchens raises $25M to expand its digital food halls

The Bay Area company combines ghost kitchen technology with elements of the on-premise experience.
Local Kitchens leadership
Local Kitchens leaders Jon Goldsmith (co-founder and CEO), Jordan Bramble (co-founder and CTO), Matthew Rudofker (head of culinary) and Andrew Munday (co-founder and COO) / Photograph courtesy of Local Kitchens

A company founded by former DoorDash staffers has raised $25 million to expand its digital food hall business. 

San Francisco-based Local Kitchens operates ghost kitchen-like facilities that house eight to 10 local restaurant brands. Customers can order from multiple brands on a single ticket for pickup and, soon, delivery. 

The Series A round was led by General Catalyst. Existing investors Human Capital and Pear VC also pitched in, along with new investors Fifth Wall and Penny Jar Capital, a venture firm anchored by Golden State Warriors star Stephen Curry.

Local Kitchens works with about a dozen small restaurants concentrated in the Bay Area, including Curry Up Now, Oren's Hummus and Proposition Chicken. Restaurant license their brands and menus to Local Kitchens, which then uses its own staff to prepare the food. 

It has helped those restaurants generate "millions in new sales" this year as well as reach new markets, said Local Kitchens CEO and co-founder Jon Goldsmith, a former software engineer at DoorDash.

General Catalyst highlighted Local Kitchens' "hybrid storefront and online model" that combines a focus on takeout with nods to the on-premise experience. Guests can order either online or at kiosks in the store, and some locations offer limited indoor and outdoor seating, for instance.

It is one of the many ghost kitchen companies embracing some elements of traditional restaurants, such as high-profile locations, external signage and seating. Kitchen United unveiled its own virtual food hall in downtown Chicago last month, and fellow provider C3 is also planning large food halls focused on to-go. 

Local Kitchens said it will use the fresh funding to grow its network in California and beyond. Its existing locations are in Cupertino, Lafayette, Menlo Park and San Jose.

It is the third ghost kitchen company to receive funding this year. JustKitchen and All Day Kitchens (also located in the Bay Area) each raised $20 million this spring. 

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