Wayback is just the beginning, too. The company actually has two trucks currently: A Wayback-branded vehicle and one for its sister barbecue concept, Uncle Willie’s. This is just a small window into the possibilities, Eucalitto says. Beyond having multiple trucks in multiple markets serving its guests, Wayback sees a licensing play at hand.
These trucks, served by the app, can be used by other concepts nationwide. A local taco joint that can’t stomach the delivery fee. An emerging micro-chain hoping to take control of the customer experience. That up-and-comer worried about packaging and introducing new guests to an inferior product. The truck also serves as a roaming billboard.
And here’s another area of differentiation from a typical food truck. Not every market is Los Angeles or Miami. In the vast majority of states, Eucalitto says, there’s a significant seasonal shift to a roaming restaurant’s business. Either it’s cold, snowing, and nobody is standing outside ordering. Or it’s 90 degrees and the experience of eating hot food is unpleasant. That’s where delivery has often ruled.
“How many days are [food trucks] actually available? Contrary to the restaurant, the restaurant when it’s raining, snowing, and cold or hot, the delivery is at its peak. So it’s kind of the inverse of what happens in the truck world right now. And I think we can take advantage of that also,” Eucalitto says.
“You don’t need to leave your place of employment. You don’t need to leave your house, and you’re guaranteed great product that’s accurate with what you ordered,” he adds.
Often the biggest complaint of delivery—it’s cold. That’s erased. Missing items? Hard to whiff when you’re walking to the window and picking up.
“And there’s not a whole heck of lot you can do when you’re using a third-party delivery company, because they’re on to the next one,” Eucalitto says. “Everyone suffers. The drivers get a bad rap. The restaurant gets a bad rap. Things happen. Now you have an ability to get it to the customer, give them everything they want, serve it piping hot.”
So how does Wayback expect to bring this to life? Firstly, the trucks run just $35,000–$50,000 apiece, which is significantly lower than buying a fully equipped food truck.
The trucks don’t take cash. Guests need to order from the app. So there’s no walking up to the window and placing an order. It’s more akin to private catering than a food truck, really.
Eucalitto doesn’t envision the trucks sitting or driving that often. They’re going to fulfill orders from location to location.
The technology is designed so if the operator received an order, say 3 miles away, and accepts it, and then two minutes later received another that’s a mile and a half away, it will redirect the driver to the closer order. “It’s smart technology that makes it the most efficient possible,” he says.
“It’s something we believe will solve those delivery problems that exist. There are people out there saying that third-party delivery is not going to be around in a couple of years. I don’t believe that to be true, because I think the marketplaces are so powerful for volume in the restaurants. It’s a real positive,” Eucalitto says. “If we turn on UberEats in one of our locations that they’re delivering in, within minutes you have orders coming in. And they’re not customers who would have been walking through the door because they’re not watching out for us to go live on UberEats. They’re UberEats or GrubHub customers.”