Pic: Offpeak

Foodie app Offpeak becomes Yahoo Japan’s first lead investment in Malaysia

RESTAURANT discovery and booking startup Offpeak just closed a round of funding to improve its customer acquisition, expansion, and feature enhancements, led by Yahoo Japan’s corporate venture arm YJ Capital in its first-ever lead investment in Malaysia.

Shanghai-based Gobi Partners, which led the startup’s series A funding round in June last year, also joined in this current round. The total amount invested is undisclosed.

Offpeak was originally founded by Tan Ban Eu, Lau Ngee Keong, Tan Ee Ern, and Christian Nguyen in 2014, and is headquartered in Malaysia. The app leverages on empty tables during off-peak hours, and helps restaurants fill up those tables by offering discounts to customers who wish to beat the lunch/dinner crowd.

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Customers choose a restaurant through the app, make a reservation and turn up at the designated time to enjoy their discounted meals at no additional cost. Offpeak has expanded out from Malaysia to Thailand, Singapore, and Vietnam, and claims to have partnerships with over 2,600 restaurants across its markets – double what it had when it first launched in Singapore in December 2015.

Shinichiro Hori, COO of YJ Capital, said in a statement: “The roll-out and growth rate of Offpeak in Southeast Asia is commendable and impressive. We expect Offpeak to continue this momentum for the future, too.”

Tan tells Tech Wire Asia: “We are definitely honored to be YJ Capital’s first lead investment. We believe that YJ Capital’s knowledge and experience in the F&B sector can truly guide us to create a more complete F&B platform in this region.

“We somehow landed a first for Gobi Partners and YJ Capital in Malaysia, I guess we can call ourselves lucky. With us taking the first step, we hope that this can bring more attention to the Malaysian startup scene, as there are plenty of good entrepreneurs in this country.”

The Offpeak team. Pic: Offpeak

Offpeak also announced a strategic partnership with Malaysian F&B supplies marketplace, Supply Bunny, which helps managers in the industry find suppliers for various items.