Fast food & Café Convention Wrap Up – What we learned and what excites us
The Fast Food and Cafe Convention was held at the Conrad Hotel in Dubai in November. The event looked at the latest and greatest in fast food technologies and trends. More than 300 attendees from across the Middle East, India and North Africa met to discuss the challenges facing Quick Service Retail (QSR), cafes and casual dining sector since the global pandemic. And they explored how dark kitchens (restaurants running as takeaway outlets) and cloud kitchens (commercial kitchens used only for local delivery) might help improve the industry.
Our very own Simon Newberry was there in our GapMaps booth at the event. He spoke with many of the attendees, and he was interested to see the range of technologies available for the event.
“Everything at the event was tech,” Simon observed. “There were systems for Human Resources, Point of Sale, even ‘shoulder surfing’ technology, where fast food outlets know what you want on your pizza before you get to the front of the queue. Just everything in this part of the world is driven by tech.”
We validate our data in a number of different ways, from mobile device data and land use analysis, so we have a very high confidence in the integrity of the data. And it’s our massive advantage
Simon said most of the people who saw our GapMaps video during the event were fascinated by the level of detail in the data we capture in our platform. While many had never seen that granularity of data, all were looking for more accurate location intelligence.
“That’s what gives us the real point of difference in the region,” he noted. “We validate our data in a number of different ways, from mobile device data and land use analysis, so we have a very high confidence in the integrity of the data. And it’s our massive advantage. The fact that we can zoom into small areas is hugely important to QSR planning in this part of the world.”.
The event was the first real face-to-face opportunity to meet in the region in two years. That chance for professionals to connect and learn from each other across the sector was clearly appreciated by all, and there was a real spirit of sharing. One influencer from a company called Repeat.app even sent a lot of attendees to our booth, because he was so impressed with GapMaps, and because he felt it was important for decision makers to sit and talk to us about how GapMaps can help. Thanks to our new friend!
Up next for Simon is to follow up with all the attendees at the convention, providing walk-throughs and demos of GapMaps for the specific needs of different planners. “WhatsApp is how everything in business is done here,” Simon concluded. “We’ll be connecting digitally and in the real world to see how we can help build the sector, and be part of the problem solving around staffing and aggregation in the region.”
We are all looking forward to some exciting times in 2022 for GapMaps in the MENA regions. If you’re interested in hearing more about how GapMaps can help your QSR business in the MENA region, get in touch with us here.
Check out the GapMaps video featured at the Fast Food & Cafe Convention below: