Written on the 7 March 2016 by Laura Daquino


EVERYONE claims it, but Melbourne startup Neighbour Flavour actually takes the cake as being the Uber of food that Aussies have been waiting for.

Co-founder Kimberly Teo (pictured left) tells Business News Australia that Melbourne's home-grown foodie culture inspired her to launch Neighbour Flavour which brings together 'hungry neighbours and passionate cooks'.

People can buy home-cooked meals in their communities without the fuss and home cooks can earn money by making extra portions of what they're already cooking.

"The spark was walking around my neighbourhood and smelling this amazing food and wondering why I couldn't just walk into other people's places and eat," says Teo.

"We all like to eat three times per day and if you don't like to cook, you're kind of stuck in a position of eating takeout all the time and never being able to enjoy a home-cooked meal."

While she might have followed her nose, 28-year-old Teo hasn't gone into Neighbour Flavour on a whim.

She's well-aware of the heated sharing economy, being one-half of the founding team behind Simply Borrowed, a bridesmaid gown hire startup.

Teo also has a layered corporate background from working in procurement for multinationals including BP, and holding analyst and consultant roles at Portland Group and J.P. Morgan.

Neighbour Flavour co-founders Kerry Osborn (pictured right) and Adrian Brown, who is based in Brisbane, aren't green to business either. Osborn prior to this co-founded Australia's first monthly subscription fashion and beauty box, Her Fashion Box.

"I think founding a startup a little older than someone straight out of university has its clear advantages," says Teo.

"You learn how to manage people and expectations. Also, not starting out with no money, which happens when people are really young and it's really difficult to do.

"We have bootstrapped the venture up until this point and our skillsets cover most things but we are soon launching a seed round of funding."

Teo says there are startups executing the same strategy in the US although none are dominating more than one city.

"There are bound to be 100 companies around the world at the same time doing this," admits Teo.

"We are all still really early stage though, so we just need to move fast and gain traction quickly."

To set the business apart from a raft of competitors, Neighbour Flavour has teamed up with Foodbank so for every meal purchased through the app, another is delivered to Australia's largest hunger relief organisation.

As well, the Neighbour Flavour team is working with food safety experts to draft an industry code for home cooking - which would be an Australian first.

"There's a lot of red tape and the thing about innovation is it always precedes regulations," says Teo.

"We're almost thinking ahead of what the government would want to see to create a really regulated environment, because at the moment the regulations are written with only commercial kitchens in mind.

"We want to make sure the community is safe and we have the best food safety experts in Australia guiding us."

Author: Laura Daquino Connect via: Twitter LinkedIn





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