Entrepreneur Moves From Camcorders to Grilled Cheese

Can a big-time tech entrepreneur make it in the restaurant business?  Jonathan Kaplan thinks so.  The founder of Pure Digital, which created the Flip Video camcorder, has a new startup:  The Melt, a chain of quick-serve grilled cheese restaurants that just opened its first location in San Francisco.  Cisco Systems, Inc. bought Pure Digital for $590 million in 2009.

Not surprisingly, Kaplan’s restaurants leverage technology to provide innovative food preparation and customer convenience.  Custom presses expedite cooking time and flavor for the grilled cheese sandwiches while mobile technology allows customers to order menu items from their computers and mobile phones.  According to news reports, Kaplan plans to open 25 to 50 restaurants within the next year and about 500 nationwide within five years.  Here’s an article by AP’s Rachel Metz with more details.

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About Lynne Strang

I'm a writer who blogs about 40-and-older business owners. I am also the author of "Late-Blooming Entrepreneurs: Eight Principles for Starting a Business After Age 40." Outside of work, I enjoy reading, cooking, vegetable gardening and exercise (especially cycling).
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2 Responses to Entrepreneur Moves From Camcorders to Grilled Cheese

  1. Katelyn Anton says:

    Such interesting news. We wrote an article on the Flip camera which you can read here http://blog.freeyourdata.net/2011/04/27/flip-flop-gone/

    It will be very interesting to see how the fast food business works out for Kaplan. The ability to order from your laptop or smartphone is not a completely new idea, but Im sure that it will catch fire quickly enough.

    We look forward to seeing one of his businesses in the Northeast sometimes soon!

  2. lbstrang says:

    It will be interesting indeed to follow this new business and see how it turns out. Hopefully, its use of technology will deliver a positive dining experience for customers — plus a sufficient market demand for grilled cheese sandwiches will be there to support its expansion plan. Thanks for commenting.

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