New food delivery service to help students

BY OLIVIA CARRINO
Daily Staff Reporter
Published October 14, 2009

Ann Arbor’s shockingly cold weather might be a little bit more bearable this year with a new student business delivering food right to your door.

Straight 2 Your Door restaurant delivery service joins a small but growing industry of companies that bring food right to students’ doors. Straight 2 Your Door currently acts as a middleman between 22 local establishments on or near campus and hungry students across campus.

The business was started last year under the name MDelivers. Business senior Evan Demchick is the current CEO and works with Business juniors Zach Albert and Marshall Eisler.

Demchick said S2YD was started simply because not enough Ann Arbor restaurants delivered.

“We basically thought that there were too many restaurants out there that we liked that we wished delivered to us, but did not,” he said.

Orders can be placed online or via phone, and delivery can take up to an hour from the time the order was placed. Service is available Sunday to Thursday from 11 a.m. to 1 a.m. and Friday to Saturday 11 a.m. to 3 a.m.

Food prices are slightly increased to cover company costs and a $2.99 delivery charge is placed on all orders. Currently, S2YD employs five drivers and anywhere from one to four can be making deliveries at a time. Many restaurants affiliated with S2YD can also be found on EatBlue.com, one of the company’s main competitiors.

Demchick explained how S2YD operates.

“We employ drivers and basically the way it works is people can order through us either by calling in or online on our website,” he said. “We have a call center which will take calls and contact the restaurant and they will make the order, our drivers will come pick it up and deliver it to the customer’s door.”

Looking into the future Demchick said the goal of the company is to continue growing.

“The bigger we expand, the better,” he said. “I guess we’re trying to basically make every restaurant accessible to every student regardless of if they have a car or if it’s nice outside. We want to make sure if they want any restaurant they can go on and get that restaurant. If the restaurant delivers themselves, that’s great, but if not we’d like to take care of that for them.”

Manager Nick Oliverio of Max & Erma’s on East Eisenhower Parkway said the new service will definitely mean more student customers ordering from his restaurant.

“It’s been picking up kind of steady since September when the school got back in,” he said. “You’re going to target it a lot at the dorms. I mean that’s who we were targeting initially.”

Oliverio also commented on the success of the deliveries.

“So far it’s been great,” he said. “We have plans to keep it going just the way it’s going right now.”

Owner Sukhdial Singh of the Quizno’s located on South Main Street said the reason he got involved with S2YD was really to help the students.

“I can go to the students and maybe their needs are a little far away from me so that way I can reach them and give them business … So I’m just helping myself and helping them,” he said.

However, Singh said business hasn’t been good enough for him to keep working with S2YD and the results of the partnership have been mixed.

“It’s not easy for me as a franchise owner,” he said. “Quizno’s took 11 to 12 percent, then (S2YD) took (money). I want it to improve, but I don’t know, we will see … I can wait a few more months.”