The Restaurant & Takeaway Innovation Expo

15 & 16 JUNE 2021


How Dark Kitchens work for you

The chances are that you either have a kitchen which is not being used all of the time, or you are in need of a kitchen some of the time.
 The term ‘dark/ghost/cloud kitchen’ has picked up steam this year and usually refers to kitchens that have been created solely to be used by delivery only food outlets. Whilst these are usually purpose built, any café, restaurant, bar or cafeteria is closed for a significant proportion of each day. These businesses are often unaware that they are sitting on a commodity that can be monitised and turned into a so-called ‘dark kitchen’.

New food businesses all need access to kitchen space, but many cannot commit to the rental term or the high costs involved. For these businesses, hiring kitchen space from a café that is closed in the evening for example, is a perfect solution.

With more and more of us turning to the likes of Deliveroo, Uber Eats and Just Eat when we are hungry, chefs and budding entrepreneurs have an opportunity to bypass the higher rents and overheads associated with serving customers directly and focus instead on their ability to make great food. Businesses ranging from delivery only restaurants to providers of pizza making classes have used Occupyd to find flexible kitchen space in London and further afield. 

Those on the high-street might see this as a threat, with hungry consumers turning to their phone instead of going outside and sitting in somewhere. However, consider a café that is open during the day, bustling with breakfast and lunch trade but then goes dark and closes the doors in the evening. This is a golden opportunity for the café owner to start making money while they sleep – by turning their idle space into a dark kitchen.

A delivery only food business can take up residency in the café in the evening, keeping the front-of-house empty of customers but busy with delivery riders coming in to make pickups. Motivated by having flexible access to the exact type of space they need, the delivery only business is incentivised to keep the space immaculate so that the next day, it’s business as usual for the café.

This type of win/win is commonplace in the so-called sharing economy. Airbnb unlocked a hidden market in people’s spare rooms which could be slept in by weary travellers. At Occupyd we see the potential to apply this to workspaces to empower small businesses with new ways to make money and operate.

If you are a food business, the chances are that you either have a kitchen which is not being used all of the time, or you are in need of a kitchen some of the time.
Get in touch: Occupyd
+44 (0) 7791 980373