I’m at the TechStars Demo Day in New York City, where a class of twelve startups are showcasing their products to a room full of hundreds of investors (we’ll have a recap on TechCrunch later today).
Among the companies is a service called Ordr.in — which brings the power of food to any app, service, or website that wants to integrate it. Or, more specifically, it’ll let any of these services integrate online restaurant ordering. CEO David Bloom just announced that the company has raised a seed funding round from Google Ventures, which was led by Rich Miner.
Of course, there are already many web services that’ll let you order food from local restaurants (I’m currently addicted to SeamlessWeb). Thing is, the market is fragmented. Even the biggest services like Seamless and Grubhub don’t cover the entire US, and they don’t have all of the restaurants in their supported cities, either. And then there are many, many smaller sites covering local areas.
Ordr.in’s solution has been to parter with 72 local food ordering sites (and counting) across the United States, which let users order from some 7,000 restaurants. It then normalizes all of that data, and gives other apps and services access to it via an API.
It’s this API that lets any app or service integrate food ordering. Say, for example, Netflix wanted to integrate an option to oder dinner alongside your evening streaming movie. With Ordr.in, they could do it. And they have a financial incentive to do so — they get a cut of each transaction (as does Ordr.in).
The company has landed some major partners already, including Wyndham Hotels, which has 5,000 properties serving 110 million guests, but no room service. The hotel is using the Ordr.in API to integrate a food-ordering feature from its Wifi welcome screen. There are dozens are apps that have implemented using the API already, including a Hunch mashup and a Boxee app.