London-based hosptech company (and TechStars graduate) Tenzo has raised $5 million in a Series A funding round. According to the company, the fresh produce will be used to help the company continue the development of its AI-powered analytics for the food industry platform. Since mid-2016 Tenzo has raised north of $7.7 million.
Tenzo’s $5 million Series A round was led by Amadeus Capital Partners and S28 Capital.
Harnessing vast amounts of restaurant industry data into what it calls an ETL (Extract, Transform, and Load) engine, Tenzo is effectively providing some 250+ clients including Vapiano, Nando’s, and TGI Friday’s with detailed analytics to help these restaurants not only improve day-to-day inefficiencies but also the bottom line.
In addition to upping revenues, Tenzo says that it can also help drive down the environmental impact of food waste, a malady that plays a significant part in the 530 million tonnes of CO2 emissions annually by the food and agriculture industry.
If any of this sounds familiar, yes, there are other players on the market, the least of which is Excel, doing much the same, but where competitors can’t hold a match to Tenzo’s flame is in a co-founder partnership that includes Cambridge University graduates Christian Mouysset (Economics) and Adam Taylor (Computer Science), as well as a host of team members hailing from Harvard, Oxford, and London Business School and previous employers including Bain, Google, and McKinsey.
Goodwill Goes a Long Way
In combination with a sound team, Tenzo’s success can also be found in its longevity and resilience. Founded in 2016, you might think that a global live-at-the-office experiment might put the kibosh on a company that’s sole purpose is to support the hospitality sector, and for a few, it certainly did. However, as we all collectively scratched our heads, regardless of the industry we call(ed) home, Tenzo took the high road, offering customers compassion and understanding.
“When the pandemic started, we were a little worried, restaurant sales were down 70%, and we thought - how are we going to deal with this? One of the first things we did was to pause billings for our customers. This brought us a huge wave of goodwill,” says Mouysset. “We used the time to regroup and focus on a lot of tools that we’d been meaning to get around to, instead of focusing solely on supporting customers.”
As it would play out, this goodwill and forward focus has served Tenzo well. While it might seem counterintuitive to put your stream of income in a holding pattern in the middle of a massive ‘what do we do now?’ moment, as we would see, a vast swath of the restaurant industry pivoted on a time and scaled up their tech offer; and Tenzo was equipped to not only meet demand but was also armed, or arming themselves, with new tools and products to take to market.
Delivering on the Promise
Now with the backing of Amadeus Capital Partners and S28 Capital, the company aims to deliver even further on an ambitious roadmap set out at the beginning of the live-at-the-office experiment; one that not only helps restaurants increase revenues but if all goes according to plan, will save the industry around 75,000 tonnes of food waste globally by 2027.
“Digitisation, especially action from data-driven insight, has been slow to penetrate the food and beverage industry,” commented Amadeus Captial Partners' Manjari Chandran-Ramesh.
“While the pandemic has accelerated this adoption, most Restaurant PerformanceOps rely on experience instead of augmenting that with forecasting using learning models and relevant data. Consequently, the restaurant industry is one of the biggest contributors to food waste. Tenzo’s innovative solution leverages the power of AI using the most appropriate data sources and pertinent models. The PerformanceOps product enables restaurants of all sizes to optimise their operations and reduce food waste, making them more sustainable and profitable.”