Pizza as a Service: the all-in-one robotic pizzeria aims to integrate digital transformation into every pie

Pizza flourished during the coronavirus pandemic as people turned to take-out and delivery options. An automated pizzeria under development could usher in a new era of brave slices.

Image: Piestro

With restrictions on indoor dining, the coronavirus pandemic has forced restaurants to transform their operations virtually overnight, with contactless delivery and curbside take-out becoming popular options. Compared to before the pandemic, 68% of people were “more likely to buy take-out from a restaurant” and about half (53%) said take-out and delivery were “essential to their fashion. of life, “according to the National Restaurant Association’s 2021 State of the Restaurant Industry Report. A new automated all-in-one robotic pizzeria could transform traditional take-out with bot delivery underway.

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Amid a modern scourge, the pizza industry flourished during a turbulent time for the hotel space. Nearly 2,000 new pizzerias have popped up during pandemic, New York Times says item announcing the foldable delivery staple as “Restaurant Hero of 2020”.

The company, Piestro, takes an automated approach to pizza making using an all-in-one robotic slice shop, or as the company calls the approach, “Creating the artisan pizza experience with a futuristic twist.” “.

“With the onset of the pandemic, growing concern has emerged for greater health and safety measures in restaurants and an accelerated need to move to a take-out and delivery model for operators,” said the CEO of Piestro, Massimo Noja De Marco. “In this ‘new normal’ as we called it, consumers have turned to quick access food options with minimal human contact – and that won’t go away a year and a half later.”

Overall, the entire pizza-making process takes three minutes, according to Piestro’s website, and the individual units have a viewing window, giving customers first-hand insight while the robo- pizzaiolo distributes the sauce and prepares the pies inside.

The Piestro startup has “designed robots that make pizzas at a fraction of the cost of traditional pizzerias,” the website said, noting that it is “able to maintain high quality ingredients in order to make better pizzas and offering them at lower prices to customers. “by” anything but eliminating the retail footprint and labor costs associated with pizza production. ”

“For locations, businesses and restaurants that deploy Piestro, there is also the benefit of cost effectiveness, as Piestro is much less expensive than traditional dining options,” said De Marco.

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Image: Piestro

A series of graphics on the company’s website compare Piestro’s all-in-one approach to the “traditional pizzeria,” which the company describes as a “low-margin business hampered by labor costs. and high real estate “. In the traditional model, food costs (18%), labor (28%), real estate (12%) and “other” costs (20%) reduce the overall profit margin (22%) , according to Piestro’s estimates, “based on management’s experience and information available at fast-food and casual restaurants.”

With the Piestro approach, profit climbs to 48% with comparatively lower labor (10%), real estate (10%) and other expenses (14%), although food costs remain the lowest. same (15%), according to company estimates based on “management’s assessment of available information regarding automation in fast-food and casual restaurants.”

A graphic on the site highlights the “dual revenue stream approach” for pizza chains (national and regional) and direct to consumer customers. On the DTC front, Piestro’s list of potential locations includes malls, offices, while the units would allow chains to expand to new geographies and new “audiences.”

“One of the main reasons Piestro has captured the interest of investors is due to its capabilities as a stand-alone pizzeria that offers artisan-quality pies in spaces closer to where consumers live, such as halls. apartment complexes, ”said De Marco.

The coronavirus pandemic “has exacerbated” the global consumer appetite for the “trend of lower contact and faster delivery services,” De Marco said, adding that it is the company’s mission to respond to this. asks “without sacrificing the quality, freshness and taste of the food itself.”

Labor shortage and automation in the United States

After a year of layoffs and high unemployment, many employers have stepped up their hiring in recent months. In this regard, said De Marco, “at the highest level, Piestro is addressing the labor shortage currently crippling the industry” as well as other public health considerations.

“Our robotic solution not only helps fill vacancies that workers don’t return for, but it also helps maintain social distance between current kitchen staff so restaurants are protected from pandemic-related disruptions,” he said. he declared.

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Four to door: automated delivery of pizzas and robots

As we previously reported, Domino’s and the autonomous vehicle company Nuro launched an autonomous delivery program in April, with robots ready to bake pies for some customers in Houston. Last October, Piestro announcement a partnership with the robotics company Kiwibot which would force the robots to cross the last mile to deliver pies made in the autonomous robotic pizzeria.

At the time, Piestro said the all-in-one kitchens would be “integrated into a delivery mechanism for Kiwibot, enabling contactless delivery, further limiting the potential for customer exposure to harmful pathogens” via the control via the app.

It’s important to note that an asterisk on the website explains that the included photos of the pizza-making unit show the company’s “first working prototype”, as Piestro’s machine is in development and “doesn’t is currently not available on the market “. A countdown on the site counts down the remaining seconds in September; the ‘last month to invest in the’ delicious pizza maestro ‘.

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