Asda has invested in digital food-for-now start-up Lean Kitchen Network (LKN) alongside hospitality investor Edition Capital.
The move comes in advance of a larger Series A round of funding in the business later this year.
The start-up will spend the Big 4 grocer’s investment to improve on-site dining selections and drive on-demand delivery sales.
It has partnered with brands such as Heinz, Doritos and PepsiCo to create interactive menus that change in real-time to adapt to customer specifications.
Its next stage will reportedly see the business use under-utilised kitchen space from large hotel, restaurant and pub chains to trial new concept menus and food services, such as a Doritos ‘nacho bar’ and a Heinz breakfast special.
Asda will also partner with LKN to launch “tech-driven food-for-now” counters at four of the grocer’s London stores in Colindale, Edmonton, Park Royal and Bexley.
According to the supermarket, customers will be able to order unique items from LKN’s counters on touch-screen kiosks, on their phones by scanning a QR code or have food delivered by Uber Eats.
“Asda’s partnership strategy is anchored around collaborating with innovative businesses like Lean Kitchen Network to bring new products and services to customers”, Asda’s chief strategy officer Preyash Thakrar said.
“We look forward to working with them as they drive positive change in the food-for-now market, leading to greater choice and improved quality for consumers.”
Lean Kitchen Network founder Faraz Nagree added: “Our partnership with Asda represents a big step forward in our ability to provide high quality, affordable and exciting meals to our customers across the UK.
“Their unparalleled expertise and buying scale combined with our digital and food development capabilities will be truly disruptive for food-for-now and delivery as we grow at pace.”