Countries like Italy, Thailand and Japan are known for their traditional dishes. Tourist offices offer more and more cooking classes to introduce visitors to the local cuisine. The Thai startup Cookly jumped on this trend in 2015 as well. Through the platform, users can book cooking classes in more than 30 countries worldwide: making pasta in Rome, traditional Balinese cooking in Ubud or cooking ceviche in Lima.
Cookly was founded by the German Benjamin Ozsanay, the Frenchman Etienne Marleau-Rancourt and the Thai Kowit Charoenratchatabhan. The headquarters of the startup is Bangkok. However, hardly any of the 30 employees work in the Cookly office in the Thai capital, says CEO Ozsanay in an interview with Gründerszene and NGIN Food that the employees are spread all over the world. Before joining Cookly, the now 31-year-old founded the app development tool Polar Labs and traveled Asia. “You have to be much more organized, especially in communication,” he says of his international team.
Especially the Germans want to learn to cook
In two small rounds of financing, Cookly has received money from the Thai offshoot of venture capitalist 500 Startups and from Poramin Insom, head of cryptocurrency Zcoin, for the past two years. His startup is not yet profitable, says Ozsanay. The portal keeps a fee of 20% on average per booking. In 2017, the average shopping cart at a cooking class in Europe according to the company was worth about 250 euros. The CEO does not want to reveal how much the startup is currently implementing overall.
Cookly currently lists more than 1,000 courses in over 130 cities. The majority of the clientele come from Germany, says the co-founder. The startup is currently building up its network in the USA and South America. However, Cookly does not want to avoid regions that do not have typical or varied cuisine, according to Ozsanay. There, cooking classes for locals will be offered to introduce them to popular dishes from other countries.
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