On-demand chef service Haochushi has announced a 100 million RMB ($16 million USD) series B funding round from Cowin Capital following investment from Lightspeed China Partners.
“This round of funding will be used to expand our service to a bigger market scale and to standardize” Haochushi CEO Xu Zhiyan said.
Haochushi launched its service in 10 second-tier cities this year , according to the company. They also opened several more product categories online to provide customized meal options since January.
Since their June launch, Shanghai-based Haochushi is available in four cities, Beijing, Shanghai, Hangzhou, and Shenzhen and is iOS and Android compatible.
In October 2014, the company received 5 million RMB ($803,000 USD) angel investment from Shanghai Zhonglu Group, focused on entertainment and hospitality services. This February, the company secured their series A investment with an injection of $5 million USD from Lightspeed China Partners.
Haochushi claims that current daily orders total more than 1,500, and about 1200 chefs are listed including full time workers. If the customer wants to prepare ingredients the overall payment is reduced, otherwise the chef will purchase ingredient on the consumer’s behalf. According to company, monthly ingredient purchase turnover is about 4 million RMB ($643,000), and the average payout for chefs is around 8,000 to 12,000 RMB ($1,286 USD to $1,929 USD).
Member subscription is divided into four categories based on how much the user wants to recharge their ‘card’. For example, the silver card, the basic level, recharges 1,000 RMB and gives 100 RMB to consumer. The company forecasts that this year the order volume will surpass 10,000 transactions.
The on-demand market is a field that has seen strong growth in China. In the same vertical other competitors include Shaofanfan, and Whichef. This April, Shaofanfan CEO Zhangzhijian announced that the service already reached an average of 300 daily orders.
Whichef works on a slightly different model. The company invites banquet hall chefs and encourages each chef to build their own brand value and to push different kinds of dishes. After the dish is ready, the company adapts the U.S. FDA and Europe’s food safety authentication guidelines to vacuum package the dish, then makes express delivery within 3 hours in tier one cities.
Image Credit: Sohu