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‘Ghost Kitchen’ Innovator Kitchen United Makes First Acquisition, Buying New York City’s Zuul

Published on Thursday, October 7, 2021 | 5:46 am

Pasadena-based Kitchen United has acquired software and ghost kitchen developer Zuul, marking its first acquisition to strengthen its position as the preeminent restaurant delivery and take-out technology and facility company, while consumer demand for food off-premise continues to grow.

A company statement Monday did not disclose the terms of the transaction.

“As one of the first ghost kitchens in the New York City market, Zuul has laid a foundation that will further enable expansion of this type of business model in a massive, key market,” said Michael Montagano, Kitchen United CEO.

“As we looked for opportunities to continue to build upon our leadership position and scale into new territories, strengthening our platform with the addition of Zuul and its cutting-edge ZuulOS technology made strategic sense. I have long admired Zuul’s leadership team and we are excited to have their expertise and insight as we expand into the metro-New York area and beyond,” Montagano said.

Zuul creates products and services designed to help food-service operators grow their business and focus on making great food. The company has supported multi-brand innovators as they scale their business with simple tech solutions, offered restaurant operators opportunities to grow ghost kitchens, and advised landlords and restaurants who wanted to build ghost kitchens and virtual brand models.

Zuul’s platforms include Zuul Market and ZuulOS, which were designed to drive profitable food delivery for operators and offer a unique online ordering experience for consumers. ZuulOS enables operators to create their own virtual food halls and fulfill multi-brand orders with minimal effort.

Kitchen United said Zuul’s native online ordering and batched deliveries platform will provide an efficient delivery model that will marry well with its own proprietary technology platform, MIX, a “multi-restaurant ordering” to-go system that allows foodie fans who love variety to order meals from over 10 restaurants on the same bill.

The Zuul Market platform will help Kitchen United expand its virtual brands within its kitchen centers, the statement added.

“We look forward to this next chapter for our company, and I’m very proud of our team for establishing a valuable, one-of-a-kind business,” said Corey Manicone, Zuul Co-Founder and CEO.

“Kitchen United has built the dominant ghost kitchen business for the restaurant industry and we share the same goal of offering restaurants cost-efficient, low-risk ways to tap into the ever-growing consumer demand for off-premise food,” Manicone said. “I look forward to working with the Kitchen United team as we execute on the next chapter of growth.”

Under the agreement, the Zuul Kitchens executive team will remain intact and the Zuul brand will be incorporated into Kitchen United. The existing Zuul facility in Manhattan will transition to a Kitchen United MIX kitchen center.

Kitchen United also plans to open a second Manhattan location this month.

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