In a move that validates South Africa's venture capital sector and technology startups ecosystem, Uber Eats has acquired orderTalk, a South African company offering restaurants globally online food ordering systems. The acquisition has been announced by South Africa's Knife Capital.
orderTalk was founded during 1998 by Hilton Keats after securing an online ordering software development partnership with a chain of restaurants in the USA.
“Raising capital by way of the investment made by HBD provided enormous value, not only in tangible but also intangible terms. The strategic support, mentoring, advice and hands-on assistance received from HBD and Knife Capital over the years of the investment have been invaluable,” said Patrick Eldon, CEO of orderTalk, in a statement announcing the acquisition,
Patrick Eldon, a lawyer by qualifications, joined orderTalk as CEO in 2004 and opened the Cape Town head office in 2005. After initial angel investor backing, HBD Venture Capital (owned by South African Internet billionaire, Mark Shuttleworth and subsequently managed by Knife Capital) invested ZAR9 million (approximately $700,000) in 2008 to scale the business internationally. orderTalk initially expanded its technical capabilities in Cape Town, the main client base started growing aggressively in the US and UK. Over the years the core business was relocated to Dallas, Texas.
“With orderTalk’s engineering talent and the group of people that we’re acquiring, we’ll be able to supercharge our own point of sale integration strategy.” said Liz Meyerdirk, Head of Business Development at Uber Eats.
Meyerdirk further added that the orderTalk acquisition was part of Uber Eats' two-fold strategy to reduce the amount of errors which can arise with manually entering orders, and to streamline workflow, so that orders are directly fed to the kitchen display monitor or ticketing system.
orderTalk integrates with more than 10 of the leading POS providers and most major payment processing vendors.