Melon is committed to rethinking food delivery: getting rid of hidden fees by providing two delivery windows and a hand-selected menu.
Customers and restaurants both have gripes with traditional food delivery apps: customers are subject to hidden fees, and restaurants are subject to low margins on delivery because apps charge roughly 30% commission. On the driver’s end, they are also very reliant on trip frequency and can experience wage volatility. These are all problems with traditional food delivery apps that Melon looks to tackle.
Check them out: https://www.trymelon.com/
Melon is a for-profit B2C startup that uses a commission based model. They collect a small commission from the restaurant on orders, only charge a delivery fee from the customer if the order is outside a certain delivery radius, and pay drivers a fixed fee.
Melon has a website where users can create an account, look at restaurant and meal options for lunch and dinner for the week, and place orders. Users can also provide their phone number to receive messages from a text-bot which allows users to order through text. Orders can be placed during two time windows and Melon drivers will deliver them within an hour and a half.
Traction and Fundraising
- Currently serves Georgia Tech campus and some surrounding areas in Midtown (primarily focused towards students right now)
- Expanding marketing efforts through Facebook and Google ads in preparation for student’s return to campus in Fall
- Participated in Georgia Tech’s Create-X program
- Will look to start fundraising in October
Kevin Wang: MS in Computer Science @ Georgia Tech
Jack Olinde: Ph.D. Student in Mathematics @ Georgia Tech
As students, we are always looking for ways to be frugal and doing so with food delivery is tough. A $10 meal can end up costing upwards of $15 and the founders of Melon experienced exactly this. The platform also provides the opportunity to try local restaurants that many out-of-state students would not have exposure to.
From a defensibility standpoint, it seems unlikely food delivery giants would replicate Melon’s model as they would have to overhaul their driver pay structure and mute the at a whim order nature of users on their platforms. By proving that a platform like this works for students, Melon could expand to small businesses (as they plan on doing) and poach some of the market addressed by delivery giants.
The food delivery space is bloated and customers along with restaurants are looking for ways to make delivery work for them: Melon can revitalize this space and answer the demands of customers, restaurants, and drivers while doing so.