DamoGO is a social impact startup in Korea that aims to reduce food waste in Seoul while providing discounts to consumer’s food. The app DamoGO lets consumers in Seoul buy unsold food in restaurants, cafes, bakeries, and food stores at a discounted price of at least 50% at the end of the day. The startup was incorporated in August 2018. It had raised US$ 130K in Dec 2018 in its pre-seed funding and an undisclosed amount in Jan 2020.
Lin Hwang (CEO) and Farras (COO) co-founded the company . Lin Hwang has more than 13 years of experience in Food and Beverages Sector. He is also the founder of Halal Guys Korea Group. Farras has completed his Bachelors of Engineering from Korea University. He is also the recipient of Ashoka Changemakers Asia Award 2019.
Idea behind the App
About one-fifth of the food produced in Korea is wasted, that is estimated to be around 2000 tons of untouched food. Almost 85% of the unused food in a typical restaurant is thrown out. The cost of disposing this food is a major burden for many restaurants, cafes etc. The startup hopes that they will be able to help lessen this burden for businesses in Korea. They are not only providing a cheaper alternative for customers but also fighting global warming. According to the CEO, sustainability is at the root of DamoGO’s business model.
Businesses and Consumers
DamoGo connects various businesses with consumers for free. Restaurants, cafes, Bakeries and stores can list themselves on the DamoGO app and website free of cost. Hence, they get to increase their revenue and exposure, but most importantly reduce food wastage. They can sell unsold food items through the app at the end of the day. DamoGO takes 25% share from each transaction. It also acts as a platform for businesses to boost their brand image by moving towards sustainability. For consumers, the app is available on both Google Play and the Apple Store. The food items on the app are cooked on the same day. Consumers can order food from finest dining restaurants at half the price.
DamoGO has partnered with various homeless shelters and soup kitchens in Korea. At the end of high-quality catered events, volunteers from DamoGO collect and package the left-over food to take it to local shelters or soup kitchens. They have prevented more than 10000 food items from going to waste in the last two months.
The startup’s mission is to lead Asia to reduce food waste within 10 years. They dream to move towards a more sustainable society. “We are really a social app to reduce food waste, and our partners see the value and know that the service is not diluting their brands, but actually strengthening their brands,” said CEO Lin Hwang. The startup is looking to aggressively grow in Korea, as well as enter the Southeast Asian market beginning with Indonesia. DamoGo believes that it has a huge potential to scale outside of Seoul.
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