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CPK rolls full-menu online ordering, joins virtual food-court

CPK rolls full-menu online ordering, joins virtual food-court



California Pizza Kitchen Inc., which operates or franchises 221 casual-dining restaurants, said all of its full-service restaurants now accept online orders and payment for takeout, curbside and catering business at

The hosted online ordering system, from technology services provider Kudzu Interactive of Atlanta, is integrated with the chain’s point-of-sale system and features automated suggestive selling. It allows consumers to specify a future date and time for pickup, among other functions, and stores transaction histories so that users can reorder favorite meals easily.

In addition to accessing CPK restaurants for online ordering through the chain’s website, consumers also may place Internet orders for CPK fare at Snapfinger is Kudzu Interactive's "virtual food-court" of more 6,000 restaurants in 1,600-plus cities representing all of the brands served by the firm, including San Clemente, Calif.-based Pick Up Stix, which earlier this year added online ordering at approximately 100 units.

Kudzu chief executive Jim Garrett noted that Snapfinger has in excess of 1 million users in its database, which is growing at a rate of 25 percent monthly.

CPK co-founders and co-chief executives Rick Rosenfield and Larry Flax said they were proud to be among the first casual-dining operations to make its full menu available for online ordering. Initial customer feedback has been positive, they added.

Besides full-service restaurants, CPK and its franchisees operate 25 fast-casual CPK ASAP outlets, which are expected to field online orders beginning sometime in the first quarter of 2009, according to Garrett.

Though he declined to detail his company’s business arrangement with CPK, Garrett said that, on average, Kudzu users pay 3 percent to 5 percent of transaction amounts and $100 per month per location when the service is integrated into their POS systems. In addition to such standard charges, which can vary according to the number of units operated by a client and the number of transactions per location, he said there are optional fees for mobile text ordering support, call center, email marketing and web analytics services, among others.

For the latest December-ended fiscal year, California Pizza Kitchen restaurants in the United States generated estimated systemwide sales of $642.0 million. The company has been struggling against declining same-store sales this year, like most operators in the casual-dining sector, with that metric falling 2.4 percent in the quarter ended Sept. 28.

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