Demae-can – online catering site

Demae-can (JP) is  a comprehensive online catering and food delivery service. You can order pizza, sushi, or Joe the Plumber from your web browser.

Demae-can has contracts with national chains as well as many small independent restaurants. You can use Demae-can throughout Japan. Orders are sent to the restaurants by fax. So, small restaurant owners don’t have to introduce PCs or terminals into their restaurants.

Demae-can has 8400 service providers on the site, 1.88 million registered users [3], and 20 million page views per month [1].

Demae-can is operated by a public company called ‘Yume-no-machi Sozo-iinkai‘ (JP). The company has a 3.6 billion yen (36 million USD) market capitalization. This year’s revenue (FY2008) was 940 million yen (9.4 million USD) and its post-tax profit was 156 million yen (1.5 million USD). [3] [4]

The company started Demae-can in (the year) 2000. It took 6 years before it recorded a profit, because its business model was non-traditional [1]. Demae-can went public in 2006.

CEO Rie Nakamura joined the company in 2001. At that point, the company was suffering a loss, and facing   financial problems. Nakamura was working for one of Japan’s leading bento (lunch box) companies and her company had a contract with Demae-can. The former CEO of Demae-can was impressed with her ability, and asked her to join and save the company.

In 2007, Yahoo Japan made a tender offer to acquire 40% of its shares [2]. As a result, Yahoo Japan is now the biggest shareholder with 39.67% of Demae-can’s shares. [3]

[1] http://profile.yahoo.co.jp/independent/2484 (JP)
[2] http://japan.internet.com/finanews/20070222/3.html (JP)
[3] FY2008 financial statement (PDF, JP).
[4] Pre-tax profit was 268 million yen (2.68 million USD).

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Shunichi Arai is developing a product for his new stealth startup. Arai devotes his life to software business, reading, and salsa dancing. Arai also loves to learn other cultures and languages such as Korean.

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Shunichi Arai

Shunichi Arai is developing a product for his new stealth startup. Arai devotes his life to software business, reading, and salsa dancing. Arai also loves to learn other cultures and languages such as Korean.