Food waste analytics for restaurant chains. The kitchen of the future is here. The most accurate and profitable way to reduce food waste in your kitchen. Now enabled with cutting-edge AI technology.

SaaS Sustainability Food Waste







Series A



Series B






Series C


May 19, 2019

Food waste management software


🤔Customer pain points can be divided in two categories: “must-have” and “nice-to-have”. From a restaurant pov the “waste monitoring / analytics” aspect seems like a “nice-to-have” (it won’t increase revenue or employee productivity). It’s probably a hard sell, and why the main value proposition on the homepage is about the money that can be saved from food waste.


👍 Winnow is not targeting single restaurants, but chains and franchises (like Ikea, Hilton, Costa Cruises…). For instance a chain such as McDonald’s has more than 36k restaurants worldwide. There's enough rubbish bins in the world for Winnow :-)


🤔When I analyse a product, I often think in terms of friction:

  • What friction does it remove for the user?
  • But also, what friction does it create for the user?

When you look at Winnow product from the “friction created” angle, it’s tough:

  • The customer needs a new dedicated hardware to be installed in his kitchen. Take into account the friction linked to maintenance (when the device doesn’t work, when it needs to be replaced).
  • The software needs to be trained a couple of weeks before it can perform well (so that the recognition software adapts to the specificity of the food waste produced).
  • Employees need to change their habits when dealing with waste and integrate the device in their everyday tasks (changing habit is tough).
  • The more friction a customer needs to overcome, the more difficult product adoption is. That being said, the benefit of products with high adoption friction can be a lock-in effect (it’s the reason why B2B payment software have a lower churn, because once you’ve setup everything, it’s a real pain to switch to another provider).

    Business model

    🤔I’m not a hardware startup specialist, but in the unit economics you must take into account:

    • COGS (Cost of Good Sold) a.k.a the costs to create, manufacture, store and ship Winnow device.
    • Service costs: installation, training, maintenance and replacement of the hardware.

    That being said, Winnow is not selling a “one time” device, but a “Hardware as a Service”. So the margins are probably not as good as a pure SaaS (usually around 80%), but probably better than the margin of a consumer hardware company (if they have a long enough LTV).

    PS: if you’re interested in the unit economics of hardware businesses, there’s some really interesting content here.