The owner of KFC and Pizza Hut is set to acquire an innovator in kitchen order management and delivery technology in a nod to the way in which the industry is evolving.
Yum! Brands will pay $72m (£51m) for Australia-based Dragontail, which it says will give it the ability to scale the firm’s artificial intelligence (AI) kitchen order management and delivery technology globally.
Dragontail’s platform is focused on optimising and managing the entire food preparation process from order through delivery.
Its AI-based solution automates the kitchen flow combined with the process of dispatching drivers. The technology can also operate with outside food delivery partners.
In addition, Dragontail’s platform offers consumer-facing capabilities that enable customers to track their order.
“With Dragontail, we expect to tap into the power of AI to accelerate and further enhance our delivery technology capabilities, especially at Pizza Hut, and optimise the end-to-end food preparation process,” explained Chris Turner, CFO at Yum! Brands.
Yum! Brands and Dragontail have been working in collaboration for a number of years.
Dragontail’s platform is currently deployed across nearly 1,500 Pizza Hut restaurants in more than 10 countries.
In addition to its kitchen order management and delivery technology, Yum! Brands’ purchase of Dragontail will bring other emerging technologies that the firm owns in-house.
Completion of the acquisition of Dragontail under the transaction documents will mark Yum! Brands’ third technology acquisition in 2021.
In March, it acquired Kvantum, an AI-based consumer insights and marketing performance analytics company with a track record of adding significant value in enabling data-driven decisions to drive return on advertising dollars and increase sales.
It also purchased Tictuk Technologies, an omnichannel ordering and marketing platform company offering more ways for consumers globally to access and order KFC, Pizza Hut, Taco Bell and The Habit Burger Grill through text, social media and other conversational channels.
Yum! Brands operates more than 50,000 restaurants in 150 countries and territories.