GrubHub's New Approach to Food Delivery

By March 19, 2008

Food delivery has gone hi-tech in Chicago, San Francisco, and Boston thanks to Chicago-based   Born in 2004 from the creative minds of Matt Maloney and Michael Evans, GrubHub provides online access to restaurants that

deliver in Chicago, San Francisco, and more recently Boston. All you need to do is type in your address to discover who delivers in your area and to access menus.   GrubHub’s easy to use searchable interface includes a comprehensive database of restaurant information that is younger than 120 days. To order, you need to set up a free account with Within your account, you have a virtual menu drawer with Past Orders, Favorite Menus, My Reviews, and Account Info. Even better, you can provide the restaurant with special instructions on food preparation, such as pepperoni on only half of your pizza; or you can provide the delivery driver with special instructions for accessing your building.   GrubHub also allows you to rate and review service and guide other registered users of the site. has advertising deals with restaurants whose logos appear on the site, and this is how they make money. However, GrubHub still lists restaurants even if there isn’t an advertising partnership in place.   According to Matt Maloney, one of the founders of GrubHub, the goal of GrubHub is to provide consumers the easiest and “best consumer interaction” for food delivery and also to get rid of those pesky paper menus.   San Francisco-based Extreme Pizza has had a relationship with GrubHub for over 2 years. Jimmy Ryan, one of the partners of Extreme Pizza, says that online orders are at 20 percent and growing; most, if not all, come from GrubHub.    Interview of Jimmy Ryan, Partner of Extreme Pizza: The future of GrubHub is to scale up in multiple markets, one market at a time. “It’s not one-size fits all,” says Maloney. “Each market is different. Consumers in San Francisco, for instance, are “extremely tech savvy, so they got it quickly.” Boston has a promising market of hungry college students that attracted them.    Still deciding where to move next, GrubHub has its eye on New York, Seattle and Washington, D.C.   By Kathleen Clark   FEEDBACK For comments on this article, email us at

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