Healthy food to go London-based chain Abokado opened their 21st store in March 2014, after almost doubling in size last year!
Abokado's core proposition is healthy food, which is freshly made on site and served extremely fast, as well as hand-crafted coffee. In terms of product range, what they do is unique, as they are the only operator within the UK to offer such a wide breadth of product, including freshly made sushi, along with a breakfast and coffee offering.
Founder Mark Lilley explains how it all started and where he got his inspiration from following a visit to Australia.
"In 2003, Sydney was jam-packed with good value takeaway lunch spots selling fresh sushi and fresh juices, interesting noodles and hot pots and at that time there was virtually nothing like that in London. It was very much dominated by the traditional sandwich operators with quite a dull offer. We opened our first unit in Drury Lane, London in 2004 and it all started from there."
About 18 months later the second and third store opened and the business really started to take off. In 2013 calendar year, Abokado opened eight stores, starting the year with 12 and ending it with 20, with another 10 stores planned for 2014.
Symphony Enterprise is used by the business to manage their offer and to provide the business critical real-time sales information across the stores.
"When we started it wasn't quite a 'Granville' till, but it wasn't far off!" Commented Mark
"Staff had to memorise about 150 products! We now use the Symphony system and we run it across the entire business " a 'real-time' EPOS system, giving us all the data analysis we need. It's not cheap but it 's invaluable " we couldn't manage without it."