Having heard about Sequoia and others investing in a gourmet grilled cheese company by the creator of the Flip Camera, Jonathan Kaplan, who incidently has no experience in restaurants, one was left with only one thought (paraphrasing a silly woman’s book), “Smart People, Foolish Choices!” Flip founder wants you to melt for grilled cheese – San Francisco Business Times.
After reading through his concept, I still question how capital allocation decisions are being made by the gurus, but feel some relief that it really isn’t about grilled cheese–though the reporter seems to miss the bigger picture in the story. Kaplan’s company, by my interpretation, is actually focused on creating a delivery system that enables technology to control just-in-time provisioning of food stuff to consumers, beginning with a very simple little product. One orders on-line, gets a QR-code which is scans inside the store and within 2 minutes you hop the line to pick up your food; later versions will have the system scanning for your arrival by mobile signal and — Voila! — when you walk through the door your steaming hot food is waiting to be handed to you. I imagine a future world, when I’m driving witin 5 miles of the shop, it reminds me of how much I love my particular style of grilled cheese–with a big slice of tomato pressed in the middle–and if I just hit reply, it will be waiting for me at the door. This will become the ‘must have’ technology at all food establishments. And I’ll also be getting that text as I pass by my favorite night spot, letting me know my special martini and a stool is ready at the bar; or my nail salon advising that an open chair is available with my favorite shade of amber awaiting my arrival.
I like this so much better than a pile of Silicon Valley money and brain power going into a gourmet grilled cheese.