In conversation with CEO Steve Simoni, PSFK finds out how the on-site food delivery platform helps customers eating out focus on socializing and less on ordering, drastically reducing wait, checkout and delivery times while cutting costs for customers and business owners alike

One of the most frustrating aspects of eating at outdoor spaces, huge bars and event venues is the process of ordering. The options, lines and seating can be overwhelming, especially in crowded areas with too few servers. Food hall customers know this problem, too—everyone in a group disappears to order at various stalls, then come back with relatively little time to spend together.

But there's a solution: Bbot, a new on-demand ordering platform. Instead of trekking to a register or flagging down a server, customers at Bbot-enabled venues can pull up a site that allows them to order food and drinks and pay from their phones. Even better, the use of location codes means that no one has to get out of their seat. With a simple interface, the service helps both customers and employees maximize their time.

It's essentially a small-scale food delivery service that streamlines the typical ordering process. PSFK sat down with Steven Simoni, CEO of Bbot, to find out more about how his platform is disrupting the way restaurants and bars work.


How has the consumer perception of food service changed in the last few years?

I can speak from personal experience. I know when my wife and I go out, what we really care about is not so much the service aspect, but the ambiance or the experience. The Brooklyn Barge—why do you go there? You go because it has a great view of the skyline.

There's a shift towards experience, which is probably not saying anything that profound, but if that's the most important. We see that as the primary driver of why people go out, or else you might just stay home and order food and watch Netflix. You want your own unique experience.

Walk us through the experience of Bbot's smart ordering technology and what part of the dining experience it improves.

It's an anonymous, no app, no sign-up ordering experience for customers. That's the key tenet of the system, because if you're going into a bar with your friends, it's about speed. You can't learn a new app, you're not going to download it just to get a beer. We had to make it anonymous, no app, no sign-up. 

The goal is to, with as few clicks as possible, order your complicated order. We've got to able to get customers' personal order, and then get them out of the system and the phone back in their pocket. That's the consumer premise.

On the staff side, we spend a lot of time creating displays and indicators for the staff to be able to know the order's come in, which table location it's located, and then let them be able to get it out efficiently while also giving guests notifications. 

How does Bbot fit into the food service climate of today?

There's a new market that is more casual with fast service and great experience. That's where we fit in—not in the fine dining world, but in the sports bar in Queens, or the Brooklyn Barge, or a neighborhood bar in Brooklyn, where you want to get in, get your beer, get your food. It's not so much about service, it's about speed. You want to spend the majority of your time seeing your friends when you have a limited time after a long day at work. That's where we see our product working best.

Where can readers find out more about Bbot?


Lead image: stock photos from Syda Productions/Shutterstock