Gatorade partners with Seattle startup Volt, will integrate nutrition advice into workout app

Volt Athletics is teaming up with one of the biggest names in sports business.

The Seattle startup today announced a new partnership with Gatorade and will rename its strength and conditioning consumer app to “Volt Fueled by Gatorade.”

The revamped app combines Volt’s “intelligent” workout technology with Gatorade’s sports nutrition expertise, offering a more complete digital fitness guide for athletes.

It’s a milestone deal for Volt, which has more than 100,000 users across 120 countries on its platform that launched in 2013. Volt CEO and co-founder Dan Giuliani called it “a truly unique offering in the fitness app space” and said it could lead to similar partnerships with other companies.

“Partnering with Gatorade allows Volt to take a huge step toward providing a truly comprehensive training platform for our athletes,” he told GeekWire. “When you think about all the factors that can affect an athlete’s performance — strength training, cardiovascular conditioning, sleep, hydration, nutrition, nutrient timing, rest and recovery practices, and more — you can see the potential for future partnership opportunities.”

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Volt not only tracks and stores workout metrics for more than 35 sports, but its app also offers personalized, mobile-friendly training content that adjusts based on a user’s performance. The partnership with Gatorade will add nutrition tips tailored to pre- and post-workout occasions, along with other related content like video tips.

Michael Smith, head of digital strategy at PepsiCo-Gatorade, said the company saw a “natural synergy” with Volt.

“Our goal is to help the athlete improve through better understanding of sports nutrition,” he said. “This integration allows us to do that by putting sports nutrition education in the context of a workout.”

Smith added that Gatorade is looking to expand beyond its traditional sports drinks or energy bars, and into digital services. Gatorade, which launched the Gatorade Sports Science Institute more than three decades ago, is dipping its toes into everything from live-streaming to Snapchat games.

“As digital technology becomes more ubiquitous, it presents an opportunity to democratize access to the type of information and tools that historically have only been available to elite athletes,” he said.

Financial terms of the partnership were not disclosed.

Volt has a separate app for teams called “Volt for Teams” used by clients like the U.S. National football team, University of Washington, University of Michigan, University of Nebraska, Clemson University, Red Bull Crashed Ice Team USA, Kenya 7s Rugby, the Denver Stampede professional rugby team, the Northamptonshire Steelbacks professional cricket team, and more.

The company’s consumer app, now called “Volt Fueled by Gatorade,” launched last year and charges users $9.99 per month. Volt employs 20 people and has raised $3 million to date, including an investment from soccer star DeAndre Yedlin.

from GeekWire: https://www.geekwire.com/2018/gatorade-partners-seattle-startup-volt-will-integration-nutrition-advice-workout-app/

Now You Can Buy Insanely Cheap Restaurant Leftovers Using an App

The concept of food waste usually conjures images of servers removing half-eaten meals from diners’ tables and chucking the remains of the meal into the trash. There is, however, a completely separate type of restaurant food waste: the untouched edibles thrown out of the kitchen. Maybe someone ordered too many avocados, or the chef made more soup than there are diners to eat it. Whatever it may be, a lot of perfectly edible food is going to waste, and more and more see this as a big problem.

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Solving that problem is the inspiration behind Too Good to Go, an app that functions a lot like Seamless, where you can buy back unused food from local restaurants at majorly discounted prices.

Through the app, a user selects the restaurant and purchases an order. From there, you just need to show up at the restaurant before closing time, where you’re given a takeaway box and can fill it with as much food as you care to. (I should clarify that restaurants sell unused food from the kitchen, not the scraps from diners’ plates.)

Prices range from £2 (roughly $2.59 USD) to £3.80 (about $4.93 USD), and you’re not just getting some third-rate takeout shack’s leftovers. Places like Yo! Sushi and Chop’d have gotten on board, as have supermarkets, buffets, bakeries, and universities.   

“Food waste just seems like one of the dumbest problems we have in the world,” co-founder James Crummie recently saidThe restaurant industry is wasting about 600,000 tonnes of food each year, and in the UK alone there are one million people on emergency food parcels from food banks. Why do we have these two massive social issues that are completely connected, yet there is not much going on to address them?”

That 600,000 tons of food also produces another 200 tons of carbon dioxide emissions. Meanwhile, the U.S. wastes enough food annually to fill a college football stadium, and it’s estimated that worldwide, one third of food produced for humans is lost or wasted.

Read more at The Spoon: https://thespoon.tech/now-you-can-buy-insanely-cheap-restaurant-leftovers-using-an-app/

Uber Eats’ Move Adds to a Noisy, Competitive Delivery Market

The food delivery business has suddenly shifted from being about consumer convenience to a battle of market competitors more focused on profits and flattening the value chain than providing options. An industry focused on giving hungry consumers the opportunity to select from a wide array of dinner-time choices has morphed into pizza delivery 2.0 and that’s, at best, boring. Simply said, the home chef faces a lot of cacophonies when it comes to grocery delivery, meal kits, and restaurant fare (home and away).

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Profits are a good thing, especially for public companies or ones with an eye on expansion or acquisition. However, what we find in recent announcements is a change from the initial concept of turning a fleet of rideshare drivers into a virtual extension of a city’s best restaurants.  When Uber Eats acquires Ando, a “dark kitchen,” its fare likely will become the focus of its New York delivery options.  The king of all rideshare firms thus sends a signal to its customers that Ando’s bibimbap and fried chicken will be tonight’s special every night. The food delivery business is heading for a 180-turn, moving from delighted consumers (as we see in the GrubHub ads) to one of supplier vertical consolidation.

“We are committed to investing in technology that helps consumers, delivery and restaurant partners alike,” Jason Droege, Head of Uber Everything told TechCrunch. “Ando’s insights will help our restaurant technology team as we work with our restaurant partners to grow their business.”

None of this is to say that Uber Eats is wrong or alone in seeking ways to increase its bottom line. Others such as Deliveroo and Amazon are connecting pieces of the value chain—that is owning the food prep and delivery segments of the business—to streamline its operations. And, from a business 101 perspective, it is a sound idea if the founding principle of consumer choice remains intact.

Read more at The Spoon: https://thespoon.tech/uber-eats-move-adds-to-a-noisy-competitive-delivery-market/

Pizza Hut is making Black Mirror’s self-driving pizza van a reality

We have good news and bad news, people. The good news is that self-driving pizza delivery vans are becoming a reality. The bad news is that our world is literally turning into Black Mirror.

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Pizza Hut has tweeted some concept art for what it calls “the first Pizza Hut fully autonomous delivery concept vehicle”, saying that it is excited about its future partnership with Toyota.

Uber Eats acquires David Chang’s food delivery startup Ando

Ando, the delivery-only restaurant started by David Chang last year, has been acquired by Uber Eats, according to TechCrunch. The startup will cease delivery of its gooey cheesesteak sandwiches and crunchy chicken fingers in New York City (its only service location) as it begins to merge with the ride-hail giant’s food delivery service.

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“Starting Jan 22nd, 2018, we will no longer be serving customers in New York — online or via our Union Square location — as we will be immediately starting to integrate with Uber Eats,” a notice on Ando’s homepage reads. “To all our customers, thank you for inviting us into your homes and offices. You were as much a part of this company as all of us, and it was a pleasure serving each of you.”

Ando’s merger with Uber Eats is relatively unsurprising. The startup has deep ties with the ride-hail company, beyond just using its courier service, Uber Rush, for delivery. Ando’s was designed by Expa, a San Francisco-based startup lab built by Uber co-founder Garrett Camp. Hooman Radfar, an Expa partner, helped Chang create Ando.

Over the last year, Uber Eats has been a relative bright spot for the troubled ride-hail company. While Uber’s reputation took it on the chin, Uber Eats has prospered under Jason Droege, who runs UberEverything, the portion of the business not focused on ride-hailing. The number of trips by UberEats drivers grew more than 24 times between March 2016 and March 2017, according to a New York Times profile. The food delivery service, which is available in 120 markets around the world, is profitable in 27 of those markets. In some places, UberEats is doing better than its ride-hailing business.

An Uber spokesperson would not offer any details on the integration of Ando into its business. Droege said in a statement, “We are committed to investing in technology that helps consumers, delivery and restaurant partners alike. Ando’s insights will help our restaurant technology team as we work with our restaurant partners to grow their business.”

from The Verge: https://www.theverge.com/2018/1/22/16919070/uber-eats-acquires-david-chang-food-delivery-ando