Managing Partner Spyro Korsanos joins investors and entrepreneurs to look at food tech and the future
At Allocate, a private equity event held by Unquote magazine just outside London, Spyro Korsanos joined a panel with Robin Roland (Non-Executive Director of YO!Sushi, Café Nero, Rosa Thai, Operating Partner at Trispan), Alastair Cooper (ADM Capital) and Richard Murray (CEO FoodChain). We debated how to navigate the ever-evolving landscape of tech innovation to find the best investment opportunities and the changing nature of food consumption.
We looked at the proliferation of food delivery models and disruption in the supply chain, all arising from advances in technology. Denise Ko Genovese, as moderator, asked an important question for investors. How do you identify and capitalise on a long-term shift as opposed to a temporary fad?
Spyro explained that trends in evolution lead to important knock-on effects in technology and business.
Technology, broadly defined as the tools to do things faster and better, is continually improving and at an increasing rate – even faster than predicted by Moore’s Law. It’s inevitable that more people will be connected to the internet and that they will have more mobile devices with greater processing power.
This has implications for all industries, including the food sector. Internet accessibility and computing power have driven food delivery’s evolution from restaurants being connected, as in the marketplace model, to the ‘connected riders’ model, to next-generation multi-vertical delivery apps delivering more than just food.
It also means that the lifetime of a business model shortens. Technology enables companies to conduct business in totally new ways or removes friction from the way they historically operated. The growth rates of tech businesses are higher (food delivery is still growing at 80% year-on-year) but competition is greater. With the guidance of their investors, companies need to look at the most intricate, tactical ways to lock in value, such as increasing customer loyalty and securing the key assets of the business.
As investors we can capture superior returns in this fast-moving area but we need to be stay close to management teams to ensure that their strategy is secure for the longer term.