MONROVIA, Montserrado â€“ One of the leading fast food restaurants in Monrovia, Monroe Chicken, has become the newest restaurant to sign up for Cookshop.biz, the homegrown tech start-up that delivers food to customers from 19 of Monroviaâ€™s best restaurants.
The decision to join Cookshop was likely made because Monroe Chicken could not keep up with demand from customers. General Manager Mazen K. Halabi said when the restaurant did its own delivery, it took time for workers to return, which caused delays for other services for which they were needed at the restaurant.
He said the partnership has eased Monroe Chickenâ€™s challenge of responding promptly to its many customers.
â€œOur customers today can [order] through Cookshopâ€™s website and choose the food they need and Cookshop calls us,â€ Halabi said. â€œWe prepare the food, and they take them to the customers.â€
Since the partnership began almost two weeks ago, Halabi said there have been several orders through Cookshop each day.
The collaboration has been an important win for Cookshop, especially since Monroe Chicken, along with Sajj House and Dianaâ€™s Restaurant were the few restaurants in Monrovia that still had their own delivery services.
Halabi expects the alliance to increase the customer base of both organizations. â€œSince Cookshop is known to people now, they have their own customer base, and we have our own customer base,â€ he said. â€œWe decided to work together so that we can advertise Cookshop so other people will use their service and at the same time Cookshop will advertise us by allowing their clients to use our services through them.â€
Halabi continued, â€œI think it is a smart and good venture for them and for us and for the customers because, at the end of the day, they seek customersâ€™ satisfaction, and we seek customersâ€™ satisfaction.â€
A co-founder of Cookshop.biz, Charles Cooper, welcomed the partnership with Monroe Chicken. He said Cookshopâ€™s growing customer base would help Monroe Chicken improve its reach.
Despite joining Cookshop, Monroe Chicken will still maintain its delivery staff. â€œItâ€™s not that Cookshop does not have the capacity,â€ Halabi said. â€œBut I have delivery personnel working with us for some time now, and if I am going to use Cookshopâ€™s services only, I am going to have to lay off six or seven people.â€
He said the two parallel delivery services would allow the restaurant flexibility to deliver if there were challenges with either companyâ€™s delivery service.
Cookshopâ€™s Cooper was not fazed by Monroe Chickenâ€™s continuing their delivery service. â€œEven though they still have their own delivery system, what we have is a website that allows people to browse food from different restaurants,â€ he said. â€œSo while customers are looking and making decision on what to buy, they can also browse Monroe Chickenâ€™s menu immediately on Cookshop which is a great option to have â€“ so thatâ€™s an added value weâ€™ve brought to them.â€
Cooper said he hoped Monroe Chickenâ€™s decision can spur others to join Cookshop, including the Ethiopian Restaurant in Sinkor and other popular restaurants that were subscribed to Cookshop before the Ebola outbreak. He would also be pleased to have other prominent restaurants like Sajj House also signing-up for Cookshopâ€™s services. Other restaurants that are also yet to partner with is organization are Vickiâ€™s Fingers and Sharks.
Featured photo by Gbatemah Senah