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01/10/2022

Checkers & Rally’s Rollout Drive-Thru A.I. Voice Assistant

The QSR is deploying Presto’s voice ordering solution at all corporate-owned restaurants this year.
Anna Wolfe
Senior Editor - Restaurants
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Rallys drivethru

Checkers Drive-In Restaurants Inc., the operator of Checkers & Rally’s iconic drive-thrus, has selected Presto as the exclusive provider of automated voice ordering for all its corporate-owned drive-thru restaurants. The A.I.-based voice assistant is scheduled to be deployed across all corporate-owned Checkers & Rally’s restaurants in the U.S. this year.

Designed to help restaurants maximize labor efficiency, Presto’s next generation solutions help improve order accuracy, increase upsells, and provide a superior guest experience.  

In 2021, Checkers & Rally’s conducted a detailed pilot program of Presto’s automated voice ordering technology at multiple locations over a four-month period. During this time, Presto’s solution delivered a high level of automation and accuracy with over 98% of drive-thru orders completed with minimal intervention from restaurant employees. The Presto solution also performed well with unique or infrequently ordered menu items and easily managed various guest accents.

Integrations with other systems is driving POS purchase decisions for 86% of restaurants, according to HT's 2022 POS Software Trends Report

“Checkers & Rally’s is the pioneer of the double drive-thru restaurant model, so our decision to again lead the industry with the largest rollout of an A.I.-based voice assistant solution should be no surprise,” said Frances Allen, President and Chief Executive Officer at Checkers & Rally’s. “We are excited about this new era in partnership with Presto, a leader in the restaurant hospitality technology field. As a company, we embrace technology that will help our team members maximize time and efficiency while making their jobs easier and more enjoyable, creating a better experience for them as well as our guests.”

This new partnership is expected to enable Checkers & Rally’s to streamline the guest experience while increasing the guest-to-staff ratio in the drive-thru. By deploying Presto, Checkers & Rally’s believes that they can free up staff for more people-dependent areas of their business and enhance guest interaction overall.

On November 10, 2021, Presto announced the execution of a definitive merger agreement with Ventoux CCM Acquisition Corp., a publicly-traded special purpose acquisition company that will result in Presto becoming a publicly listed company. Upon closing, the combined company will be renamed Presto Technologies, Inc. and expects to trade on NASDAQ.

A Banner Year 

It’s worth noting that 2021 was a year marked by big investments in restaurant technology. Recent headlines include: Paradox, a conversational recruiting platform, announced a $200M Series C investment.  Union, a hospitality engagement platform, raised $22M earlier this month. Plate IQ raised $160M.

Recent, high profile IPOs and acquisitions in the restaurant tech space include SpotOn acquisition of Dolce Software, and the digital and mobile commerce platform Appetize.  HungerRush’s acquisition of Menufy.  On the M&A front, FAT Brands bought Fazoli's for $130M.  On the vendor side, Punchh was acquired by ParTechnology and Restaurant365 Bought Compeat.  First Watch filed to go public, and Toast filed for an $100M IPO. Online ordering company Olo held its IPO in March.

Presto's next-generation drive-thru voice solution uses A.I. to automate speech recognition for restaurant drive-thrus. This solution has been developed in partnership with Hi Auto, a conversational A.I. technology company focused on creating a human-like solution for automating and optimizing the sales experience at drive-thru restaurants.

Additionally, Presto has other voice products that can be deployed in a variety of restaurant settings including line busters, kiosks, pay-at-table systems, and server handhelds to streamline the guest experience while increasing the guest-to-staff ratio. Presto’s solutions take orders using automated A.I. that frees up staff by automatically transmitting orders to the restaurant’s POS system. The company believes that its solutions enable faster transactions and improve order accuracy by eliminating human order taking. They can also increase check sizes with automatic upselling and cross-selling.