Square launches a service to run restaurant operations, and suddenly its ‘Caviar’ acquisition makes sense
-Square launches software designed to run all of a restaurant’s operations.
-That may help to explain why Square bought food delivery service Caviar four years ago.
Payments processor Square said Tuesday it is launching Square for Restaurants, a software platform for restaurant operations designed to bring more small businesses into the Square ecosystem.
The software — which Square calls its most sophisticated software yet — ties together in one place all of a restaurant’s operations, from booking tables to managing the after-meal check.
And with the launch, the company’s 2014 acquisition of on-demand food-delivery business, Caviar, finally makes sense.
Shares of Square rose more than 4 percent following the news.
Not only does the new platform integrate Caviar — a food delivery service — into the restaurant’s system, but it provides Square an opportunity to sell other products — like loan packages and accounting software.
Square has long faced questions about Caviar, which it bought for a reported $90 million.
Square successfully grew its business through payments and hardware. Takeout food delivery is a capital-intensive business that has attracted such players as Uber and Amazon, with far bigger driver networks and logistics experience. Some investors and analysts have questioned Caviar’s strategic position within Square.

Deirdre Bosa
CNBC
Published 11:01 AM ET Tue, 8 May 2018

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