DoorDash senses a presence [Ralf Nau/The Image Bank via GettyImages]
Your ghost burrito has arrived... DoorDash's core biz model is straightforward: the gig app connects you to drivers, who pick up your order from restaurants. Now, America's top food deliverer is putting on its apron: DoorDash opened its second "ghost kitchen" — aka: a delivery-only restaurant. Unlike DoorDash's first ghost kitchen, where it only rents space to restaurants:
Flipping burgers... and business models. Instead of taking a cut of restaurant sales, DoorDash is giving restaurants a cut of its kitchen sales. Like Uber Eats, DoorDash has never made a profit. But this kitchen model could help it keep a larger slice of restaurant sales, and potentially boost its profit margins. If its cooking experiment is successful, DoorDash could keep its kitchen past November.
Restaurants could become more scalable... thanks to "kitchen-as-a-service" options. Opening new restaurants is expensive, time-consuming, and risky. Restaurant owners never know if their second location could be a hit in L.A. — or if it’ll have a "For Lease" sign in two months. Ghost kitchens remove the brick-and-mortar and hiring costs, giving restaurant owners more flexibility to test new markets.