(Photo courtesy of MunchQuick)
MunchQuick, a lunch delivery service for busy D.C. professionals, was created by two young entrepreneurs hungry for rapid success — and one of their moms.
Technical.ly DC met the barely legal CEO Asad Yusupov while he was sipping a beer at DC Tech Day, chatting up his business. Since then, the startup, which was launched in June within three months of conception, has already evolved at a lightning pace.
Starting today, MunchQuick has an improved website and will be opening up a new market at American University. The company is also ironing out a few glitches on its iOS and Android apps, which it will release in the next few weeks.
Behind all this magic is MunchQuick’s new recruit: Isaiah Turner, the 16-year-old prodigy who hacked into Yo! this summer — only to be later hired to improve the app’s security. MunchQuick also employs a handful of deliverers, cooks and student marketers at American University.
What’s the tech angle, you ask? Well, in a way, this is your latest food app. It works because MunchQuick has eliminated the usual costs of running a restaurant — so it can cook fresh, semi-homemade meals for under $10 (food plus delivery).
“We maintain a very low brick-and-mortar cost,” said Yusupov, “because we don’t have retail space.” All the cooking is done in the morning in a commercial kitchen in Alexandria.
And, he added, “we cook all the food in bulk.” No endless lists of meals of questionable freshness here. Every day, MunchQuick offers three simple choices of “MunchBox” meals, which include an appetizer, main course and desert: meat, vegetarian and comfort. Voilà.
Meanwhile, the recipes — which change every day — are cooked up by Yusupov’s mother. Muslima Yusupova is from Uzbekistan and owned three Eastern European restaurants in her day. She used to specialize in classic French and Russian cuisine, but she also makes a mean mac ‘n cheese — one of the most popular items on the menu based on customer feedback.
For the purpose of MunchQuick, Yusupov and COO Leith Jaber not only crafted their own “food incubator,” which will be phased out in favor of keeping the food chilled for freshness. They’re also introducing electric bicycles to their delivery fleet.
The two met through common friends at a barbecue. Yusupov, 21, had been working in the music business, touring the country with bands. Jaber, 22, had taken his first successful stab at entrepreneurship as an international development and business student at American University.
He created a hookah delivery service.
“Hookah Del did very well,” he said, “but I needed to dream bigger.”
After all, MunchQuick really gets to the meat of it. “People really need to eat,” Yusupov pointed out.-30-
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