Slice Commits Additional $15 Million to Small Business Pizza Shops
Entrepreneurs with a passion for pizza may be interested in what one digital platform is serving up for small restaurants. Last year, Slice — a platform used to help independent restaurants manage digital sales — launched its Slice Accelerate program. This accelerator grants selected participant pizzerias with $15,000 worth of technology and services along with entrepreneurial mentorship and other benefits. Now, Slice has announced that it’s committing an additional $15 million to the program.
According to the company, Slice Accelerate was launched in response to the pandemic, which saw increasing demand for take-out businesses but brought several challenges. Among them, while third-party delivery apps may have brought more sales to small restaurants, the fees charged by such platforms may have prevented those sales from contributing as much to the bottom line as owners would have hoped.
Slice decided to launch its accelerator to help independent restaurants with their technology, marketing, and more, while also offering direct one-on-one support. In turn, Slice hopes that these small businesses will be better equipped to compete with larger chains and delivery services.
To date, Slice Accelerate has provided more than $1.5 million in support to over 100 restaurants. Figures show that program participants have seen their digital sales double within the first 12 months. In a statement about the progam, Slice CEO and founder Ilir Sela said, “I’m incredibly proud of the impact Slice Accelerate has made thus far. After seeing such strong results within the first year, Slice Accelerate is here to stay. Unlike a loan or a cash offering which is a quick fix — the complimentary services we offer through Accelerate are designed to bring lasting, effective results that set our partners up for future success and we look forward to continuing to invest both in our new and existing Accelerate shops.”
Instead of applications, Slice is currently accepting shop nominations (that can be made by anyone), with participants being selected on a rolling basis. As far as requirements, the company notes that “selection criteria will include entrepreneurs with enormous potential and a desire to use technology to scale up operations while maintaining a great quality product.” With that vague answer, it would seem as though Slice Accelerator is more of a way to bring locations onboard the Slice platform than an actual grant program like those we’ve seen launched by Amex, PayPal, FedEx, and others in recent months. Nevertheless, the accelerator could still be a benefit to small pizza businesses as Slice continues to grow.