Ritual Inc: Minimalist Approach, Maximalist Enjoyment
Gone are the days of labeling food and beverage delivery a taboo practice. A lifestyle today, the food delivery industry has drastically changed the way we wine, dine, and interact with food - for the better!
Spritzing a dose of difference on the market, however, are three ambitious Torontonians - Ray Reddy, Robert Kim, and Larry Stinson - all entranced by gastronomy and determined to surprise the industry with a food delivery platform that combines tech and quality food experiences to ravenous foodies.
Ritual is all about food. It screams comfort and practicality and ensures that all the best restaurants and coffee shops are just a click away. For restaurants, the platform offers online collabs, and for customers, the opportunity to order their hearts out!
It took the founding three times to make Ritual a household name, and business wasn’t always a piece of cake. They succeeded nonetheless and here’s how: with dignity, vision, and a taste for quality service.
Ray and His Friends
Today’s successful businessman and founder of Ritual was once a refugee from the Middle East. As a young boy, Ray found it hard to adapt when his family moved to Canada in the mid-80s with hopes to pursue a better life.
At the time, being an immigrant affected pretty much his entire childhood and teenage years. During this period, Ray was trying to find his voice and who he was as a person.
Ray grew up nearby Mississauga, in a humble family. Both his parents were lovable and caring people. He was the oldest of three kids, but despite that, he was timid and introverted. Rey was intrigued by books on space and science, and he was a bit different than the rest of his family.
The young boy was also a fanatic of the automobile industry, and he wanted to know everything there is about cars, but he could never find a way to approach this interest.
In the late 80s and early 90s, when the internet was seriously taking part in people’s everyday lives, Ray was amazed by the technology and the assets it could bring in the future.
So, he became obsessed and focused on the power of the internet. When Ray went to high school, he kept to himself, mainly because other kids would avoid hanging out with him. The reason for this was because the boy was from a foreign country.
That is, almost everyone avoided him, but not Robert and Larry! During classes and school projects, the two classmates saw the goodness and potential Ray had, and they didn't like the way others were treating him. So, they decided to approach him and try to make a bond.
Over time, the trio became inseparable! The three friends enjoyed spending time together every single day!
The Trio’s Career Paths and Creations
While the three boys were spending a lot of time together at school and outside of it, they had many opportunities to learn about each other's interests, skills, and dreams. Soon they realized they were sharing many of them!
The most interesting part was that all three were deeply interested in technologies and innovation. The trio had ambitions to one day make creations of their own, find solutions to problems, and work on fun projects. When the time came for college, it was no surprise that the three friends made the same choice. They thought being colleagues can help them develop more as people and as intellectuals.
The three buddies were technology optimists, and they looked forward to the future progress of the industry. So, the University choice was more than obvious. Ray, Robert, and Larry chose the University of Waterloo to grasp more knowledge in technologies, science, entrepreneurship, and business.
Everyone graduated, and Ray even continued to get a master's degree in business, technology, and entrepreneurship. After graduation, each tried to find the comfort zone they needed and started working in several different IT companies until they reunited in one start-up.
The start-up was founded by Ray in 2008, where Robert and Larry served as Seniors Software Developers. The start-up was named PushLife Inc - a platform for mobile commerce and building digital media. After only three years of existence, it was acquired by Google in 2011 and turned into a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for the tech-geeks! Google offered them open job positions in the main offices in the USA!
The Canadian guys were over the moon, and of course, they accepted the invitation! From 2011 until 2014, their potential was noticed in the exposures of Google in Silicon Valley. Ray worked as a Group Product Manager, Robert was a Product Manager, and Larry was a Senior Software Engineer.
During a trip to London, Ray came up with a new idea for a start-up. While traveling from work, together with his close friends and colleagues Robert and Larry, they explored the city and visited lots of coffee shops and pubs, but one pub remained special for the Canadian friends.
They quickly realized that all the bartenders and staff from the pub know their regulars by their name. The trio was so impressed they started making jokes about what would happen if they became regulars and if they would have the same benefits as the actual regulars.
The bartender heard their conversation and said -' sure, no problem at all!'. Ray and his friends thought that the bartender was making a joke, and did not take him seriously.
The next time they went casually for a beer, they had already forgotten the conversation they had. However, what floored the tech guys was that the bartender pronounced them by their names! Ray, Larry, and Robert were so pleasantly surprised by the connection and the bond the pub is developing with its customers that it was incredible!
The eureka moment was the first thing that came to Ray’s mind - that connection should be kept and should progress even more by applying technology.
He thought that it would be fantastic if people’s daily rituals like coffees, breakfasts, and lunches could be ordered and prepared faster and better by applying modern technology. This way, people can easily reach the connection with their favorite restaurants or coffee shops and enjoy the gastronomical journey to the fullest!
The Brilliant App
The young entrepreneurs left Google to start from scratch - and they did it perfectly! Robert and Larry thought that the idea was brilliant and backed the instinct Ray had, trusted him, and rushed into work. Ritual was founded in 2014 in Toronto.
The concept is a combination of the passion for food, technological inventions, and experience in mobile commerce the trio was sharing.
Ritual is a food ordering app for individuals and teams, designed to have the best possible software for secure payment and info and the best digital solutions to serve the customers at its finest.
The platform’s easy-to-navigate features are what customers love most. Everything you have to do is choose your nearest perfect spot for your favorite meal or coffee, order it with a single click, and pick up the package when it’s ready. A true effortless task.
Another feature that can be characterized as unique and different from other apps and delivery services is the Piggyback setting. It’s known for its doubling ordering - any coworker can attach to an already existing order created earlier, and wait for the package to arrive. Having said that, one person will be picking up every order that is attached to the first one, and others will sit back and enjoy.
Ritual’s simple and fun concept is based on order-ahead routes that connect both small and big businesses with customers to develop mutual benefits. So far, both sides are satisfied with the outcome.
Ritual’s Final Considerations
With its headquarters in Toronto, Ritual has been connected with over 15,000 restaurants and coffee shops globally. Over the years, Ritual has managed to gain a funding amount of $134.8 million. The sum comes from 13 investors, over 5 rounds.
The most recent investors are Biotech Insight Ventures and Mistral Venture Partners. The platform is different from other similar services by keeping only 10% to 12% from any order. Compared to other delivery services where the percentage for the companies is up to 30%.
Since the company’s launch, the Canadian trio managed to expand the business internationally to the USA, Asia, and Europe.
With its digitalized and machine learning design, Ritual is lowering order errors and is keeping the quality consistent.
Today, the little boy’s interest in cars is not just a passion he can not approach, instead, he can afford any car he wants. Despite this, Ray and his friends are living their tech-dream! This story is an example of how great friendships and shared passions can lead to immense success!