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May 31, 2015 11:11 AM ET

Archived: Cake: a mobile payment app for restaurants and bars in London; making payment easier, quicker and more secure for users meaning they’ll never have to wait for the bill again

iCrowdNewswire - May 31, 2015






Cake is a mobile payment app for restaurants and bars in London. Making payment easier, quicker and more secure for users meaning they’ll never have to wait for the bill again. At the same time the app enables restaurants to improve their service and know more about their customers. And with Cake currently seeing more than 20% week-on-week growth, it’s the perfect time to own a slice of the app that’s changing the way we pay.


The Idea


We want Cake to be London’s leading mobile payment engine for restaurants and bars. Cake is designed to be a quick, easy and powerful way for customers to settle their bills via smartphone. But we want to make it even better, and bring it to more people. We’ll also be building deep customer insight and greater efficiency to venues.

Backed by Karen Hanton, founder of toptable.com, and David Pritchard, former European CEO of Opentable, the business is beating forecasts, with more new venues added and more integrations live all the time: we’re enjoying 20% week-on-week transaction growth.


What’s Cake?

Cake is a free mobile payment app that connects to a venue’s existing electronic Point of Sale (ePOS) system. Used in restaurants, bars, members’ clubs and hotels, customers can open tabs, view their bill live and settle up however they see fit, all directly from their smartphone. Users can split or pay the bill in just a few taps.


We believe both consumers and restaurants are going to love Cake.


For consumers it’s designed to take away the pain of paying a bill. A few taps replaces the current, cumbersome process of placing a card behind the bar or waiting for a server to bring over a printed bill, card terminal and then, finally, a receipt. Line-by-line integration with ePOS systems means diners can easily pay for just the items they’ve ordered, pay a percentage of the bill, or settle the whole thing.

For restaurants it’s all about convenience, saving time and providing rich data. Bookings and bar tabs are secured virtually against credit cards. Cake eliminates the need to process multiple card payments for large groups. Waiters can focus on the important elements of quality and service.


“Currently, the data we get about our customers can be hard to analyse and, to be honest, not very useful – we have to make sense of the information from multiple sources that don’t talk to each other. It can be a bit of a nightmare.”

                                                                 — Alex Potter, Co-Founder, The Rum Kitchen & Goodlife Projects


Today, data provided to venues can be sparse and inadequate. Venues collect data from a variety of systems that don’t always talk to one another. So it can often be difficult for owners to answer important questions about their business:

  •      Who are our top customers?
  •      How much are they spending and tipping?
  •      What are they ordering?
  •      Are any of them in our venue right now?
  •     How do we retarget them with relevant offers?


With Cake, restaurants can gain acess to detailed information about spending patterns and preferences.

  •      Integrates with a venue’s existing ePOS technology
  •      Provides real-time, relevant CRM data direct to staff mobiles
  •      Ties together disparate systems, including electronic reservation books, point of sale machines and customer insight

Through its customer insights platform, Cake provides restaurants with this rich data in an easy to access, user-friendly format.


Paying with Cake

Cake is already live in over 20 venues and is generating top line revenue growth of 20% week-on-week.

We’re always adding new venues to Cake, and based on our understanding of the market we believe we have the technical ability to link to ePOS systems in more than 50% of London restaurants already.


Selected venues                                                                    Some of our ePOS integrations

The Rum Kitchen               North Audley Cantine                   Micros

Library                                Bart’s                                            Squirrel

Comptoir Libanais              Boopshi’s                                     Intelligent Business Systems

Eight Members Club           Goat                                             ICR

Bird of Smithfield                The Proud Archivist                     PointOne

The Market

  • The London restaurant scene is booming. It’s the greatest restaurant city on the planet. 2014 was a record year for net restaurant openings, with more than three times the number of venues opening than closing.
  • People are eating out more than ever before. The typical Londoner eats out a whopping 3.7 times a week, a huge increase from 2.2 times in the previous year. Every day, over 300,000 people dine out across the capital, spending £3 billion a year in the city’s full-service restaurants.
  • The world’s going mobile. 80% of Brits would already prefer to leave their wallet at home and perhaps use their smartphone as a form of payment. Londoners love eating out. Adding Cake to their meal is going to make the experience even better!

There are thousands of waiters and waitresses serving the London market. These are our key ambassadors. In addition to the convenience factor and data collection, we have established a variety of employee incentive programmes to drive new users to the platform every day.

And London is just for starters. The global restaurant market is enormous, with estimated revenues of over $3 trillion spent in restaurants every year. By 2017, the mobile payments industry is expected to reach $90 billion in the US.



A variety of startups in the UK offer related services. Some are focused on providing third-party or white-label mobile payment services for specific restaurant chains. Cake is different. We focus on independent restaurants and small groups to create a broader consumer offering. With over 20 venues live already as well as ePOS integrations with established providers, Cake is uniquely positioned among the competition.

Outside of the UK, the most significant emerging market is the US, where new entrants and existing reservation providers like Opentable are all looking to establish mobile payment services. But unlike North America, where restaurant ePOS is dominated by a small number of providers, the UK market is much more fragmented, with more than 50 established providers operating in London alone.

It has taken Cake a year to successfully connect to over 50% of London restaurants via relationships with their ePOS providers. This makes the UK a particularly tough market for new entrants to crack.

The People

Charlotte Kohlmann – CEO and co-founder

Between 2008 and 2013 Charlotte was at Deutsche Bank, after a stint studying at the University of Colorado. At Deutsche Bank she was a business analyst and later an associate, working with trading desks all over the world.

At the end of 2013, Charlotte quit her job to pursue Spleat, the company now known as Cake.


Michelle Songy – COO and co-founder

Michelle comes from a family of entrepreneurs and attended the University of Georgia before working for Coca-Cola for five years in a variety of financial roles in Europe and North America. In December, Michelle raised seed investment for Spleat, the company that would eventually become Cake.


Aaron Ross – Chairman

Aaron is a driven entrepreneur with a track record of building and scaling tech companies. In 2004 Aaron started FirstCare, which has grown to be the largest absence management company in the UK servicing large public and private sector clients.

The Exit Strategy

Cake intends to continue growing in London and corner mobile payments for full-stack hospitality service.

Within two years, we forecast over 500 venues in London will be accepting payments through card, cash and Cake – and accessing our customer insights platform.

The Cake payment platform has been built with an international market in mind and we already have a pilot running in LA.

We are expecting the mobile payment market to continue to grow substantially over the next few years and believe we are perfectly placed to become a significant player in the space.


Rewards with monetary value over £1000 can affect the amount of EIS you may be able to claim. Please obtain independent tax advice if there is any concern as Crowdcube does not provide legal or tax advice.

·         Invest £50 and get

FIRST TIER: Invest £50 or more, and you’ll become part of our First Tier. You’ll get our eternal thanks, obviously, for joining the Cake revolution. But you’ll also get exclusive Cake bragging rights as you’ll be free to tell your friends you now part-own your very own payment app.

·         Invest £100 and get

SECOND TIER: An investment of £100 or more will grant you access to our Second Tier. As well as bragging rights, we’ll also send you a Cake-branded cupcake (anywhere in London), so you can not only be an investor in Cake, but taste some, too!

·         Invest £1,000 and get

THIRD TIER: Four figures and you’ll be inducted into the dizzying heights of our Third Tier of Cake investors. You’ll get £50 credit to spend at any Cake venue on the app. We’ll also send you an invite to our summer party, featuring amazing special guest DJs.

·         Invest £10,000 and get

FOURTH TIER: Investing £10,000 or more will make you part of our Fourth Tier. As well enjoying all the benefits of the Third Tier, because you are getting serious with your investment, we will send you a year’s supply (a bottle, every month, for a year) of Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label Champagne to celebrate being part of the Cake team.

·         Invest £100,000 and get

FIFTH TIER: For £100,000 or more, you’ve entered a very exclusive group: Our Fifth Tier of Cake Investors! As well as getting all the stuff you’ve read about before, we’ll also give you a whopping £2,000 worth of Cake credit, so you can go crazy and splash out at some of London’s coolest venues.

·         Invest £250,000 and get

THE TOP TIER: Wowee. First things first, we love you. And to show you just how much we love you, we’ll give you the choice of either of the following rewards: We throw you the World’s Most Extravagant Dinner Party for you and up to nine friends, cooked by an award winning chef, with a private bartender and an internationally renowned DJ. You can even have it at your own home if that’s your thing! OR Dinner out, every week, for 5 years! We’ll put £50 of Cake credit in your app every week, meaning you’ll be able lord it up at London’s coolest restaurants for half a decade.

Share Types

This company is offering A Shares Only.

The A Ordinary shares will be held by a nominee unless you invest over £75,000 in which case you may hold the shares directly. A shares have voting and pre-emption rights subject to the Articles. Please read the Legal Disclosure and Articles attached to the pitch for full details. Minimum investment amount is £50.


Tax Relief

Cake has submitted their plans to raise money, details of their structure and trade etc. to HMRC and is awaiting advice on whether or not the proposed share issue is likely to qualify for Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS) tax reliefs relating to their shares.

Tax relief is available to individuals only, who subscribe for shares in an Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS). Relief is at 30 per cent of the cost of the shares, to be set against the individual’s Income Tax liability for the tax year in which the investment was made.

If you sell, give away, exchange or otherwise dispose of shares, tax reliefs can reduce your Capital Gains Tax bill. Your shares must meet certain conditions to qualify for these reliefs.

Please visit the HMRC website for further information on EIS tax relief

The availability of any tax relief, including EIS and SEIS, depends on the individual circumstances of each investors, and may be subject to change in the future. If you are in any doubt about the availability of any tax reliefs, or the tax treatment of your investment, you should obtain independent tax advice before proceeding with your investment.

Risk Warning

Investing in start-ups and early stage businesses involves risks, including illiquidity, lack of dividends, loss of investment and dilution, and it should be done only as part of a diversified portfolio. Crowdcube is targeted exclusively at investors who are sufficiently sophisticated to understand these risks and make their own investment decisions. You will only be able to invest via Crowdcube once you are registered as sufficiently sophisticated.

Please click here to read the full Risk Warning.

This page is communicated by Crowdcube Capital Limited and has been approved as a financial promotion by Crowdcube Ventures Limited, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Pitches for investment are not offers to the public and investments can only be made by members of crowdcube.com on the basis of information provided in the pitches by the companies concerned. Crowdcube takes no responsibility for this information or for any recommendations or opinions made by the companies.


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