Hello to Blackbird, next-gen loyalty, memberships, and payment for restaurants
Industry vet and Blackbird founder and CEO Ben Leventhal’s newest venture just secured $11 million in seed funding
It’s been a minute since the restaurant industry has heard much from Ben Leventhal, co-founder of both Eater and Resy, two companies that have helped to shape the future of the business — especially now. (Proof: I read in a separate interview this week that Resy’s business has tripled since the start of the pandemic; the current CEO said every month becomes its best month ever.)
Now, his next act is here. In the first half of 2023, he’ll launch Blackbird, a payments, loyalty, and membership platform designed for restaurants. It’s meant to solve a popular, if especially tricky, problem: how to deepen the relationship between restaurant and guest. That’s because stronger, more personalized relationships mean greater loyalty. And loyalty translates to higher customer lifetime value — that is, lots of happy repeat visits and purchases.
There’s a *lot* more from our conversation for paid subscribers to read, below. But also a treat for everyone: In our new-but-improving weekly podcast, Andrew Genung from Family Meal and I talk with Ben — our first official guest!— about what to expect from his new company. (We talk about some other stuff, too, including Martha Stewart’s new Las Vegas restaurant.)
Ben Leventhal on loyalty, web3, and what’s next
“Good customers really want to show up for their favorite restaurants,” Leventhal said in an interview this week.
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