ialoc, the platform for reservations and quick payments for the HoReCa industry, has attracted an investment of 500,000 euros from MaxyGo Invest Holding. The amount will be invested in developing the platform by adding fintech solutions and for international expansion, starting next spring.
This is the third and most significant investment attracted by ialoc – together with the amount attracted from MaxyGo Holding, the company reached total funding of approximately 800,000 euros. Before this investment, the company had secured about €300,000 in financing from GapMinder (2018), SeedBlink (2020) and Lister Capital.
Target 2023: implementation of the fast payment solution in over 350 restaurants in Romania and Europe
ialoc is a platform launched in 2017 to manage online reservations in restaurants and cafes. The founders are Cosmin Măgureanu, Emil Muhtu, Marcel Preda, Adrian Grigore and Dragoș Badea.
By the end of 2023, the company wants to support more than 350 restaurants become more efficient by digitizing the payment process at the table.
Also, the founders aim for a turnover of one million euros in 2023.
MaxyGo Invest Holding SA is a company founded in January 2022 with 56 shareholders owing stakes between 0.8% and 16.7%, including Călin Ile – President of the Romanian Hotel Association. The company was founded by Alexandru Apostol and Luciana Apostol, both holding 12.9% of the shares. MaxyGo Invest Holding SA also owns 96% of MaxyGo Credit IFN securities, following an investment made at the beginning of the year.
“This investment came at a time we wanted to expand our services in the fintech area, especially since we know that the payment part – from receiving the bill to giving the tips – is an activity that involves a lot of time for employees in HoReCa, a segment that already suffers enormously from the lack of staff. We want to use the QR code payment solution that we launched this year and ialoc Business – a solution that restaurants use more frequently for reservation management – to streamline restaurant processes without affecting the customer experience. At the same time, the attracted funding will allow us to expand internationally, among the first targeted countries being two European countries where we are already having discussions with possible partners”, says Cosmin Măgureanu, co-founder and CEO of ialoc.
One of the first Techcelerator alumni
“We invested in ialoc because we are convinced that the HoReCa industry will also embrace digitization. This segment is one of the least digitized in Romania and we have seen, for example, how in Western European countries, technology has allowed restaurant owners to quickly adapt to the new status quo generated by the pandemic. We are convinced that ialoc can become a reference name, at least at the regional level. For 2023, we want, first of all, to see sustained growth in the local market. Secondly, we expect to take the necessary steps to expand into external markets in the region“, says Mihai Apostol, representative of MaxyGo Invest Holding.
“The ialoc team was part of the first cohort of startups we chose within the acceleration programs developed by Techcelerator – in 2018. Acting and continuously adapting to the HoReCa challenges during the pandemic, the team led by Cosmin Măgureanu demonstrated their maturity and resilience to reinvent themself. Efficiency is essential in a global era of economic recovery, inflation, labor shortages, and supply chain uncertainty. With ialoc pay at the table – check out solution, restaurants could reach a 20% decrease regarding the time spent by waiters for serving. Moreover, those efficiency gains don’t come at the expense of customer satisfaction. Experience is everything and the role of payments and fast check-out plays a great customer experience. We recently found ialoc team with this new solution in our Investment Readiness program, through which we support startups to attract SEED rounds of up to one million euros, and we are proud that they are announcing their new round of 500.000 euros”, says Cristian Dascălu, Techcelerator co-founder & Gapminder partner.
The payment through QR code can increase the tip value by 30%
After the customer scans the QR code related to the meal, they enter a customized landing page for each restaurant, where there is no need to create an account or download an app. The customer can access the digital menu, call the waiter, and, at the end, to avoid waiting for the bill, choose to pay online (card, Google Pay or Apple Pay) and add a tip for the staff. ialoc integrates with restaurants’ POS software to display the bill in real-time, and at the moment, it is integrated with five such solutions in the Romanian market.
Restaurants choose to implement quick payments at the table to save time and be able to focus on product quality and service. Customers save an average of 15 minutes at the end of each meal, and restaurant staff can run meals more efficiently while tipping increases by up to 30% compared to the classic option.
The quick table payments solution was initially tested on 250 tables in a small circle of partner restaurants and processed more than 300,000 euros, representing approximately 28% of the total restaurant bills.
In the consumer segment (ialoc application and ialoc.ro website), the company records increases of approximately 15% from month to month in terms of the number of customers looking for a place to make a reservation. So far, the ialoc app has been downloaded by more than 100,000 customers, and in August 2022, ialoc has seated approximately 34,500 customers at the restaurant tables.