Egyptian food discovery and ordering platform elmenus has announced an investment in the company from David Buttress, the former chief executive officer (CEO) of global food-ordering firm Just Eat, who will also join the startup’s board as it plots aggressive expansion.

Founded in 2011 by CEO Amir Allam, elmenus is a food discovery and online food delivery platform with personalised recommendations to users at the dish-level through its AI-powered food recommendation engine.  

The startup has grown quickly, launching online ordering operations and recently its own fleet service. Having raised a US$8 million Series B funding round early last year, it has now added to its funding pot – and its board – after securing investment from Buttress.

Buttress has an extensive entrepreneurial and investment background having joined Just Eat in 2006 to launch its UK business. He led the company in making global acquisitions and investments, and also led Just Eat UK from a startup to becoming Europe’s largest technology IPO.

Now a venture partner at global venture capital firm 83 North, he has several successful startups in his portfolio and will use his expertise in customer-centric service development to support elmenus as it formulates its growth strategy and explores expansion opportunities. 

In the next 18 months, elmenus plans to scale its offering and expand its market share, with 4,000 new drivers to be recruited, as well as enrich its social and personalised dish discovery experience and empower restaurants to be stronger partners.

“As we aim to become the go-to food app for all dining decisions, and a partner of choice to restaurants to help them solve their scaling challenges in the MENA region, I believe David’s insights and exceptional record will play a vital role in accelerating our growth and guiding elmenus in acquiring a significant share of the market. We are very excited to be working with an industry veteran like David. His belief in our vision is a grand testament to us,” Allam said.

Buttress said elmenus’ exponential growth this past year had been “quite remarkable”. 

“It has been owning the food discovery approach, making it the stronger partner to restaurants as it provides them with more than just online ordering services,” he said.

“While elmenus witnessed a 3x growth in 2020 since delivery increased drastically in light of the COVID-19 challenges and more restaurants outsourced their delivering operations, the company is expected to grow 10x in 2021 as it upscales its product and restaurant offerings. It is an exciting time in the company’s evolution.”