Page 13 - MarketTimesDecember2017
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Joining the dots for street food traders
  Market Times • December 2017
NEWS
 New smartphone apps make it all happen
ATHOLL MILTON thought he had every base covered as he prepared to launch his new street food business, Bunnychow, specialising in a delicious curry dish from South Africa, served in bread.
The right background and experience — 20 years in food and hospitality — tick. The perfect street food product — tick. The ideal, purpose-designed street food vehicle — tick.
Broadgate Circle StreetDots
Then he hit a huge and unanticipated stumbling block when he began searching for somewhere to trade.
trade. We realised how many street food entrepreneurs were thwarted before they could even get started.”
has been extended from London to Glasgow, and StreetDots was recently launched in Manchester and Birmingham. The aim is to go nationwide.
a slot, pay by phone, drive there, trade, and drive off.
“It was the last thing I thought of, and I couldn’t believe how difficult it was to find a market or street food venue that didn’t have an 18-month waiting list,” Atholl said.
They looked around and spotted the Boris bikes and came up with the seeds of an idea to revolutionise street food trading.
The team has designed two apps for both iPhone and Android devices — Trade Smart for traders, and StreetDots for customers. The latter was created after they spotted people hanging out of high office windows trying to spot which catering business was in the square below.
They can also use the app to create a free trader profile with photographs of their business and details of their story.
He eventually got a small pitch on Brixton Market.
As a result both left their jobs and launched StreetDots, which they describe as the world’s smartest street food trading platform.
The company is looking to extending StreetDots to non-street food market traders, for example anyone with their own unit selling gifts, artisan food, flowers and the like.
When Darren Callcott, a street food design specialist who had designed his catering vehicle, rang to ask how he was getting on, they decided to meet up to discuss the situation.
“StreetDots brings technology into street food trading,” Atholl said.
Now they can discover where their favourite food is being served by checking their phone.
Atholl said: “I used to spend hours searching for the right place to trade and dealing with the bureaucracy. StreetDots makes is easy for street food traders to launch and grow their businesses by using technology to get them to where they want to be.”
Atholl said: “We met on London’s South Bank and I was letting off steam about the difficulty in finding places to
The pair approached private landowners with suitable open squares in London and big companies like British Land and Land Securities were amenable to the idea of renting out space for street food trading.
Traders use the app to see what dots have spaces to trade, and to book and pay for a slot. The favourite slot is 11am to 3pm but breakfast and evening slots are available.
Search for the apps on the App Store or Google Play. For more information visit www.streetdots.co.uk.
They call their street trading locations “dots” and they are both outdoor and indoor. The initiative
It means traders can simply book
  StreetDots co-founders Darren Callcott (left) and Atholl Milton
Kurbside Kitchen pulled pooch and chilli sauce
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