A contactless on-table ordering startup is taking its hospitality tech to the United States just 12 weeks after its initial launch.

London-based Leslie offers customers an efficient way to order, tip and pay via a QR code on their smartphone with no app download required. 

During the COVID-19 lockdown, entrepreneurs Joey Barnett and Dovi David founded the business which, in a matter of months, attracted multi-million-dollar investments from the likes of KKR co-founder Henry Kravis, Zip founder Larry Diamond and Middleby Corporation, the supplier of more than 80% of the top 100 food service chains around the world. 

Following its UK launch just 12 weeks ago, Leslie has been used by over 10,000 people to order and pay, and has an impressive lineup of US-based venues ready to implement the technology in the coming months.

“Driven by the ongoing pandemic, the demand for QR code-powered, contactless payments has skyrocketed,” said Leslie CEO and co-founder Joey Barnett. 

“We believe the market for scan-and-pay technology is in its infancy stages, and this will drastically and rapidly grow in 2022 and beyond.”


Leslie has already recruited over 50 people globally, including senior hires from Deliveroo, Just Eat, Apple and Amazon. 

Inspired by Barnett’s grandfather in both name and spirit, the company plans to quadruple its headcount in 2022.

“We are going for a blitzscale approach. This is an execution play and we have the foundations in place to take on a serious chunk of the addressable market,” said Dovi David, COO and co-founder. 

“The US is the biggest market of all, and we are poised to grab this opportunity.”


Chris Jones, European president of Middleby Corporation, added: “Between the challenges of working face-to-face in a pandemic and the ongoing Great Resignation, the hospitality industry is primed for innovation.

“On the heels of the traction we are already seeing in the UK from our exclusive partnership between Middleby and Leslie, I’m excited to see this flourish in the US market as well. 

“We believe technology like Leslie is the key to increasing safety and efficiency while creating an all-around excellent customer experience.”

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