“When you’re craving dinner and in a hurry, who do you call?”
This Week’s Guests
Yariv Bash is the CEO and Co-founder of Flytrex, an on-demand drone delivery company . Flytrex provides a direct-to-consumer autonomous drone delivery service that lets retailers and quick-service restaurants cater to a wider customer base with faster, safer and more economical on-demand deliveries than ever before.
Prior to Flytrex, Yariv was Founder and CEO of SpaceIL, a $100M Israeli non-profit organization that launched Beresheet, the first private interplanetary robotic mission to the Moon in 2019.
What We Learn
Flytrex is currently working with several restaurant chains and retail giant Walmart to deliver food and goods to customers’ front and backyards. Yariv talks about Flytrex, its innovative hot food drone delivery service and how drones are transforming the home food delivery industry.
02:55 Introduction to Yariv Bash, Co-Founder and CEO of Flytrex. Flytrex is a drone delivery service company, specializing in the delivery of hot food. Yariv introduces us to the company and what it does.
03:50 Delivering hot food definitely adds to the challenge of drone delivery, but in Yariv’s opinion, the greater challenge is the drones have to be certified as a commercial airplane, which are then being used to deliver individual food orders.
04:44 To order food using Flytrex, customers download the Flytrex app, select their food/restaurant and process the order just like other on-line ordering applications. Much like ordering a pizza via an app. The order is sent via drone to the customer’s house. Customers receive a text notification that the drone has lowered the order to their front or back yard. And the customer picks up the order.
05:24 Service is currently available in North Carolina (3 stations) and Texas (1 station), with more locations to be announced in the near future.
06:43 Customers can order anything from a restaurant (up to 6.6 lbs.) that is close to the station. Flytrex makes the delivery service available to the restaurants, just like other third party auto-oriented delivery companies. Rather than having to drive miles from the restaurant, the orders just have to be transported a few hundred feet to the drone launch center.
07:19 The drone flights are completely autonomous and handled by a third party commercial aviation company. The company ensures the flights are being conducted safely and within all FAA requirements. Launch sites are set up in the retail/restaurant center where there the restaurants are located. In many instances, the launch sites require a local government permit or zoning approval.
10:00 Yariv discusses the cost savings of using drone to delivery food. Typical third party delivery services can add up to 30% of the cost of the food, not including gratuity given to the delivery person. Flytrex is currently offering free delivery to the customer, with a small fee charged to the restaurants.
11:30 Currently, Flytrex focuses on delivering hot food, but they are also conducting a pilot project with Walmart to test delivery of other goods.
11:53 Yariv shares lessons learned from the past several years, which include: after a few deliveries, customers get used to the service and its viewed as a very routine operation. As for the restaurants, they are realizing a real and immediate cost savings of using drone deliveries.
13:36 Yariv talks about the regulatory and operational challenges/opportunities that could speed adoption of aerial food delivery services.
15:51 Yariv discusses the next steps for Flytrex – more restaurants and more deliveries.
16:41 Yariv shares the story of how Flyrex was created more than 9 years ago and how it’s evolved to where it is today. The company’s best geographic service area is in the suburban areas of the U.S., where the air space is more easily to navigate and where the population density is high enough to support a number and variety of restaurants. A few months ago, Flytrex announced that they have delivered more than 23,000 items.
20:08 Yariv shares advice to other entrepreneurs – (a) if it pays your salary it’s a job, if not, it’s a hobby and (b) when you encounter resistance or a “no”, take the time to analyze the position to see if there is merit. Just discount it automatically.
20:48 Closing – Yariv’s message on the future of the drones and hot food delive
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