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Streamlining the food delivery ecosystem operations - Interview with Srdjan Kosutic, Founder of Bitebell

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Bianca Iulia Simion

· 4 min read
Bitebell raises €500,000 seed round to streamline the entire food delivery and qCommerce ecosystem operations

Bitebell untangles & simplifies back-end operations for the entire food delivery and qCommerce ecosystem by leveraging APIs and workflow automation. The SaaS provides direct order solutions available via web and apps, and links the payment providers and local fulfillment partners.

Srdjan Kosutic, co-founder (CEO) - a serial entrepreneur with a strong experience in technology and product development, and a particular affinity for building transactional, financial, and data processing products.

Hi Srdjan, you are the founder and CEO of Bitebell today, but we are curious about your background. What experiences led you to become a tech startup entrepreneur?

I have always been interested in developing new products, and that's what we do at Bitebell. Also, my background is in transactional business, and on top of that, Bitebell has processed more than 500,000 transactions in less than a year. That's what excites me about developing new products and features and processing data in an intelligent way.

What problem does Bitebell solve and how would you say it alleviates your customers' problems?

Recognising some of the key pain points, including manual POS order entry, time-consuming menu updates, out-of-sync inventories, frequent human errors and a high degree of staff turnover -Bitebell was founded to support simplification and digital transformation for local businesses operating on popular third-party delivery platforms, with the main goal of saving time and increasing customer revenue.

The company benefited from being the first provider of such a service in the Western Balkans. Tell us more about the traction this has generated and how will you succeed after entering direct competition.

Last month we reached a big milestone. We processed our first 500,000 orders since launching Bitebell less than a year ago! More than 150 sites use our solution every day.

We have some direct competitors operating in the EU. Our advantage is not only in the pricing strategy but also in the way the platform is built. And while the semi-automated onboarding is something that can be scaled by competitors, the modularity is something that could take more time (bigger ship, harder to turn around), while according to our customers this is what makes Bitebell so attractive.

What qualities do you think are essential in the qCommerce sector to be successful?

Good infrastructure and on-site automation. At Bitebell, we bring value to the entire ecosystem with the main goal of automating processes not only on the restaurant and retailer side, but also on the delivery partner side. This will improve the overall customer experience and increase operational excellence on the partners' side.

What's happening in the industry you are in? What are the key trends?

We are (currently) an integration platform, but our virtual brand marketplace will allow customers (restaurants) to order matching virtual brands from delivery platforms at preferential rates below market rates (negotiated by Bitebell). To drive traffic (orders) to restaurants, delivery platforms are also increasingly introducing paid placements, which we plan to centralize bidding/buying once APIs follow.

How will ICT Hub and TS Ventures Fond help you scale? What pipelines and operational benefits do they offer you?

ICT Hub Ventures has played the role of an incubator and has been very helpful to us in taking the company from zero to the first 10,000 MRR. We benefited from their guidance and advice on initial contacts, various innovation funding grants, mentorship programs, etc. - as well as introductions to next-stage investors. On the other hand, TSVF brings in some bigger guns in terms of the regional network and reach of the company behind it - Telekom Srbija. As the leading provider of HORECA Internet infrastructure in the region (e.g. Internet), it also offers mobile POS solutions in the form of hardware, and we see a clear win-win in the commercial aspect of its investment (we have also been approached by other telecom companies for similar discussions). In terms of strategic positioning for the next round, we believe we have found a stable investor with good access to institutional investors and access to external expertise on scaling.

What is your biggest challenge in scaling?

One of the biggest challenges is finding the right people who fit into the startup culture and provide immediate positive momentum to the company and other team members. We also see this component as the most important, especially when the startup is still in its early stages.

What is the biggest lesson you have learned since you became the founder of Bitebell?

Talk to your customers all the time. They are the biggest source of inspiration and new ideas.

This also helps us identify the problems and challenges our partners face in the fast-paced qCommerce industry.

What other resources VC are you looking to bring to your Series A company?

We intend to bring in one of WEU's established funds with an exit track record and access to a broader investor base for US/APAC late-stage investments.

What makes Bitebell so special? Why should investors choose you?

We have been working as a team on various projects for more than 15 years. The synergy of different knowledge and experience allows us to develop solutions for the fast-growing delivery industry. In less than a year, we have managed to build an MVP and continue to expand. We took our business from zero to the first 10k MRR in 6 months, with very limited resources and in a very price-sensitive market like Serbia.

Bitebell raises €500,000 seed round on SeedBlink. Learn more here.

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