Administrators have been called in to a virtual restaurant firm which raised £17 million from leading VCs.
Founded in 2019, Kbox Global used data to allow restaurants, hotels and pubs to utilise spare kitchen capacity to tap into the ‘dark kitchen’ sector – licensing a suite of delivery-only brands to its client base.
The company also provided a platform for training and performance management.
Founder and serial restaurateur Salima Vellani left the company last year. Nick Holloway and Will Wright from Interpath Advisory, now appointed joint administrators, said it had experienced trading difficulties which led to pressure on its liquidity.
“After exploring a number of options, including the possibility of a sale of the business, it became clear that a solvent solution was not available, and as such, the directors took steps to seek the appointment of administrators,” they stated.
All 18 employees have been made redundant.
Holloway, managing director at Interpath Advisory, said: “This is a challenging time for many dark kitchen operators, as cost inflation continues to impact margins.
“We will now be exploring the rapid sale of both the brands and platform, and would ask that any interested parties make contact with us at the earliest opportunity.”
In 2020, as the hospitality industry fell to its knees due to COVID lockdown – and many turned to a home food delivery model to survive – Kbox Global first secured seed funding of £5m from Hoxton Ventures then raised £12m in a round led by Balderton Capital.
It rapidly built a network of thousands of kitchens in London, Manchester, Liverpool, Glasgow, Edinburgh and Brighton, and planned an international rollout of the model via franchise agreements in Australia, India and other countries.