Restaurant Payment App Settle Raises $1.5M To Bring Waiter-Free Service To Eastern Europe

There are a host of companies attempting to make settling your bill at a restaurant ‘waiter-free’, by employing a smartphone app and accompanying mobile payment and POS system. These include behemoths such as PayPal, with its ‘Pay At Table‘ service, along with upstarts such as U.S.-based Dash, Tabbedout, and Cover, the UK’s Flypay, and Tel Aviv-based MyCheck (which itself is partnering with PayPal). Now aptly-named Settle is putting its wares on the table.

The Ukrainian startup has just closed a $1.5 million funding round from Moscow-based venture fund Life.SREDA — capital it will use to power its roll out across Eastern Europe, where it hopes to achieve first-mover advantage. First up will be Kiev next week, followed by debuts in Moscow and Warsaw.

Like its many potential competitors, Settle provides a mobile payment service for restaurant-goers. Its soon-to-launch app lets you order, settle the tab, and tip from your smartphone, aiming to dramatically reduce the time it takes to pay your bar or restaurant bill. Thanks to partnerships with a number of Eastern European banks, the app connects directly to a user’s bank card without Settle having to store that card information themselves.

Meanwhile, restaurants using Settle are provided with tablets and an accompanying app to view customer and billing information, including detailed analytics. In the future this will include integrating directly with a restaurant’s existing POS system, as well as using iBeacon technology to push special offers to a customer’s phone as they walk through the door. In fact, Settle is actually from the same team behind Advice Wallet, a mobile loyalty program for restaurants that launched last October.

Looking further ahead, beyond restaurants and bars, Settle is eyeing up the opportunity to apply its tech to gas stations, where, in many parts of Eastern Europe, people are currently forced to queue and pay a cashier in-person. I’m told other potential markets also include taxis and retail.