CHICAGO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Chowbus, a marketplace that enables diners to explore and order high-quality authentic food and empowers local independent restaurants with the technology, tools, and marketing to grow their business, today announced a $4 million round of funding led by Greycroft Partners and FJ Labs, with additional investment from Hyde Park Angels, Fika Ventures, and individual investors. This new funding helps the company further invest in developing the platform and expanding to new markets.
With its user-friendly mobile app, Chowbus operates as a food-discovery platform, connecting diners with small, local restaurants’ top-rated dishes. Unlike other food-ordering platforms, Chowbus provides restaurants with not only logistical support, but marketing and technology support as well. Chowbus helps restaurants showcase their best dishes by creating dish-centric menus with high-quality photography and user ratings, which in turn helps diners explore new cuisine.
“When I first came to the U.S., I realized that it’s difficult to find authentic Asian cuisine, and it quickly became apparent that many restaurants I liked weren’t on the major delivery platforms,” said Linxin Wen, co-founder and CEO of Chowbus. He added, “This investment confirms the value of giving consumers and independent restaurants a better food-ordering solution — one that, unlike any other platform, supports the restaurant’s business and enables food discovery.”
Fabrice Grinda, founding partner of FJ Labs, a Chowbus investor, commented, “Chowbus’ vision to help people explore authentic food is ambitious and meaningful. The team is hard-working, scrappy, and passionate. They know how to build a world-class product and provide consistent service to customers. And it’s working — their repeat and retention rates are incredibly impressive. We are excited to join them on this journey.”
Last year, Chowbus achieved a 300% year-over-year revenue growth rate, and projects that the new funding will lead to expansion in 15-20 new markets in the upcoming year. The company currently operates in Chicago, Boston, New York City, Philadelphia, Champaign, IL, and Lansing, MI, and its services include an online marketplace to order food via pickup and delivery, as well as a Chowbus Shuttle, which delivers food on efficient routes. In addition to expanding geographically, Chowbus plans to onboard several key team members and build a number of value-adding features that benefit the user experience for both restaurants and consumers.
Chowbus is a marketplace that enables diners to explore and order high-quality authentic food and empowers local independent restaurants with the technology, tools, and marketing to grow their business. Founded by Linxin Wen and Suyu Zhang, Chowbus is a food-discovery platform that connects diners with local cuisine that can’t be found on traditional third-party delivery marketplaces. Chowbus is headquartered in Chicago, and has offices in Boston and Philadelphia. To learn more about Chowbus, visit chowbus.com and follow Chowbus on Instagram at @chowbus_official.