Belgian food tech startup APICBASE.COM has collected 700.000 Euros (£615,000) in a financing round, led by Business Angels Network Flanders (BAN Flanders). APICBASE, co-founded by star chef Julien Burlat, develops cloud based software which allows professional kitchens to manage and optimize their processes from raw ingredient all the way to ready-to-serve dish. The startup will use the collected funds to expand the team, further develop the software and accompanying hardware and to properly market the product and brand.

APICBASE is part of the Start it @kbc incubator, which supports innovative and scalable entrepreneurship. The startup’s technology links information about dishes to images and visualizes the whole preparation process. This allows the food industry to record the knowledge of its chefs, improve the quality inside the kitchen and train new employees faster. APICBASE also records all information regarding ingredients, dishes, and menus, resulting in more efficient management of allergens, ordering lists and cost calculation. All data will also be useable as product catalogue for commercial teams.

Carl Jacobs, CEO and co-founder of APICBASE, explains: “Without the powerful and smart software APICBASE.COM provides, food processes are quite labor intensive and require continuous manual actions. Our solution allows food companies to automatize and optimize these processes.  We are helping restaurants, hotels, restaurant chains and food manufacturers so they can provide a premium customer experience at any moment.

Photo studio for professional food images

What makes APICBASE unique is its APIC Studio. It’s a compact photo studio, specifically designed for taking images of food. Chefs can capture their culinary creation in high resolution with just a click on a button.

“Thanks to our photo studio”, according to Carl Jacobs,” companies are able to create visual, step-by-step manuals for the team in the kitchen, which keeps the consistency and quality of meals identical across several branches. The biggest advantage of our software and hardware is that they have been developed with user-friendliness in mind, making it a favorite among chefs and food managers who have to use it on a daily basis.”

Capital round logical result of strong internal growth

APICBASE was founded in April 2014, building on an idea of star chef and co-founder Julien Burlat. He was looking for a way to make professional pictures of his creations and to create a visual archive of these creations, all without any knowledge of photography and without losing too much time in the kitchen in the process.

Since its founding, APICBASE has had more than 200 customers from over 15 countries, including some big players in the food industry: Sodexo, Unilever Food Solutions, LSG Sky Chefs, Puratos and Cuisine Solutions. APICBASE also enjoys the trust of several gastronomical first-class restaurants- and chefs like El Celler de Can Roca*** (Spanje), La Mère Brazier** (Frankrijk) and the Thomas Keller Restaurant Groep*** (USA).

The recent capital increase gives APICBASE the possibility for further expansion. Jan Verbeke, lead Business Angel, explains: “through a strong network alliance like BAN Flanders, young entrepreneurs are given the chance to get in contact with a large number of business angels at once. We were immediately persuaded by the impressive journey the APICBASE founders’ team already have had so far, and it convinced us of the feasibility of their ambitious expansion plan. The entrepreneurs can not only count on financial support but on years of experience gained by the complementary investors’ group as well.”

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For more information and media contact

PR & Communication APICBASE: Anneleen Hanssens – GSM: +32 479 43 43 55 –  e-mail:  anneleen@apicbase.com

PR & Communication BAN Flanders: Benita Dreesen – GSM: +32 498 12 6001 – e-mail:  benita@bentleye.eu

About APICBASE (www.apicbase.com)

The mission of APICBASE is to provide all food companies, from small restaurants to globally active catering companies and food manufacturers with an innovative, all-in-one solution to optimize their processes. The several modules offered will improve efficiency and quality significantly, not only for teams in the kitchen but for marketing, commercial teams and management as well. APICBASE operates out of Antwerp and is the first in the world to have built a photo studio, specifically for the professional kitchen.

About BAN Flanders (www.ban.be)

BAN Flanders is the platform to connect fund-seeking entrepreneurs and private investors with each other in order to have entrepreneurs, through transfer of funds and knowledge, take their company towards success and improve the overall development of the knowledge-based economy as well. Both investors and entrepreneurs can enter the network, with the help of a coordinator in each of the seven local antennas, after which investment projects are discretely being presented through anonymous project chips and presentations at matching events. BAN Flanders also launched the www.angel4me.be portal to connect fund-seeking companies and investors with each other. Currently BAN Flanders has 225 members, including some VC-funds and it presents over 100 selected projects annually. This results in 20 to 30 effective investments per year.