Technology

Virtual Dining Concepts branches into software with Linked Eats

The new product, from the company known for virtual restaurant brands including MrBeast Burger, is designed to help restaurants grow third-party delivery revenue with automated error management and dynamic pricing.
Food delivery app
More than 30 restaurant brands are already using Linked Eats, the company said. | Photo: Shutterstock

Virtual Dining Concepts (VDC), the company known for virtual restaurant brands such as MrBeast Burger and Pardon My Cheesesteak, has unveiled software designed to help restaurants increase their third-party delivery revenue.

The program, called Linked Eats, uses artificial intelligence to automate restaurants’ error management, financial reporting, marketing and pricing on apps such as DoorDash, Grubhub and Uber Eats.

It’s intended to help restaurants recoup revenue lost via errors and fraud while also driving in more business with demand-driven price changes and marketing tactics.

Linked Eats has been advertised on VDC’s website for months but is now emerging from “stealth mode” to offer its services to a wider audience.

VDC also announced the acquisition of dynamic pricing startup Sauce, which it will incorporate into Linked Eats’ automated pricing tool.

The company’s experience with virtual brands, which do most of their business on delivery apps, exposed it to the challenges of trying to control online ordering and delivery, said Robbie Earl, VDC president and co-founder of Linked Eats.

“We invested in and incubated Linked Eats because we were not able to find operator-first tools that solved these challenges for us,” he said in a statement. 

These include the growing issue of errors and chargebacks, which can leave restaurants on the hook for refunds that were not the operator’s fault. Linked Eats claims to be able to recover 80% of that lost revenue.

It also allows restaurants to automate tasks like marketing campaigns and responses to customer reviews.

Linked Eats CEO Devin Wade said that the software was developed in collaboration with restaurants over the past year and was designed to be both comprehensive and simple to use. The company’s website promises 15-minute onboarding and no need for new integrations.  

In six months of operation, Linked Eats has achieved a run rate of $10 million in gross profitability for restaurants, Wade said.

The move into software is a logical one for Virtual Dining Concepts, as its virtual brands would theoretically benefit from a more disciplined and profitable approach to delivery. 

It also gives the company something else to sell to restaurants besides celebrity-themed virtual brands, which have declined in popularity following a pandemic boom.

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