Many people who lack the ability to cook still want access to high quality home cooking on a daily basis. This resturant in the inner city will provide these moderatley wealthy people with fresh natural meals in a personal communal enviroment for a fraction of the cost of regular resturants or cooking at home.
Value Proposition & Target Market
This resturant provides a few healthy meal options for all three meals a day as well as coffee, tea and non-alchoholic drinks. It caters for walk-ins, but meal plan subscriptions and membership is the goal. Members can get meals for as cheap as $6 a meal, if they choose to buy a whole month.
Food is locally sourced and the focus is on sustainable and healthy. There is always a dish available which caters to the various dietary requirements (e.g. gluten-free, vegan, vegetarian). Customisation is limited, but possible if your friendly enough with the kitchen staff. 🙂
The seating area is large and communcal with a single large table running through the center and smaller tables as well as a few enclosed private dining areas scattered throughout the venue.
From the above it is clear that the market is the non-cooking Gen Y and millenials living in the inner-city. These are the people who care about their food, but lack the time and expertice to prepare it themselves.
As this is a physical restuarant with a rather novel pricing model the two most important aspects of the business are pricing and location. A rapid assessment below suggests that by providing meals on a subscription basis at ~$6 per meal and getting about 150 friends on various levels of subscriptions the restaurant could easily cover the rent of a nice location in the inner city and even turn a substantial profit.
This is hardly a complete picture, but the below feels like enough to justify a deeper look.
There already exist subscription based meal services which provide microwave meals of dubious quality and freshness. It costs $576 for a month of breakfast, lunch and dinner from Lite ‘n Easy (82 Meals) for one person – this is a price the market is currently willing to pay.
You will need to have tiered pricing, e.g. breakfast and dinners only, weekdays only, 20 meal card etc. but for our purposes we will only consider customers on a full meal plan.
Now, an example operating resturant ran with 465 meals a week which at $20 per meal gives revenue of $9300 a week or $37,200 a month. We will scale that by ~50% to account for a nicer area and assume our required income per month is $60,000
If you charged $500 a month for all meals then you would need 120 subscribed customers to cover all your costs and this would make each meal ~$6, a really good price for your customers.
This may even be a gross over estimate of the break even cost, since current rent in Surry Hills, a popular innercity area in Sydney Australia, is currenlty ~$8,000 to $10,000 for an appropriately sized establishment.
It will need to be located in a similar hip area, but having a highly visible location is not neccesaryly a prioirty since marketing will mainly be by workd of mouth and social media. Provided the density of somewhat wealthy, non-cookers is great enough even a relatively hidden location would be acceptable.
Ideas and Musing
- Having private dining areas which people can book may make some people, e.g. families, more comfortable
- Identify people by face and name, all members have their photo pegged to the wall
- Perhaps have plate, bowl, mug and cutlery for each person
- Gluten free, vegan and vegetarian options are important for this crowd, as is good coffee
- Alchohol is not required initially
- Late nights and early mornings will be important as people keep very interesting hours in the city
- It should be cheap for members to bring friends, since that is a key advertising channel