Checking in? Why not check out some cricket bars or some coconut caramels?
That’s the thought process behind a new partnership between brand incubator/investment vehicle AccelFoods and hospitality food and procurement company Avendra.
It’s a move designed to make AccelFoods portfolio brands more visible to travelers and get them out into the broader market, according to AccelFoods’ Tapan Shah.
Avendra provides dining and in-room minibar selections, as well as vending, to a network of more than 5,000 hospitality accounts, including hotels chains like Marriott, Fairmont, and Hyatt.
“People are looking for things and they aren’t relying on just what’s on the grocery store shelf,” Shah said. The incubator has lined up deals with airport dining provider OTG (which includes Cibo markets) in the past, as well as a lapsed partnership to put Accel brands on JetBlue planes.
The national scope of the ordering system means that brands in AccelFoods’ portfolio will also be available to consumers who might not otherwise come into contact with the smaller companies’ regional or specialty retail footprints.
“It’s a bit more dynamic,” Shah said. “We wanted to make sure we’re giving our brands access to customers they wouldn’t necessarily be able to reach.”
Accel’s brands — it has graduated eight already as part of two “classes” and is in the midst of its third grouping — will have a specific page highlighted in the Avendra customer portal and customers will also receive information about the brands that Accel works with, including EXO’s cricket protein bars, JicaChips, and more.
The deal came through Accel’s growing relationship with Loews hotels, according to Accel co-founder Jordan Gaspar.