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MealPal doubles down on food pickup as everyone else focuses on delivery

As more and more companies fixate on creating premium delivery services, one company is standing by pickup. For a monthly fee starting at $120, MealPal lets hungry workers book their midday carry-out in advance. Subscribers get 20 lunches, which breaks down to $6 per meal. The company has raised $20 million to expand into dinner offerings and continue launching in new cities around the world. It’s raised $35 million in total.

The funding announcement comes as many other companies are focusing on delivery. UberEats, Square’s Caviar, Postmates, Muncher, Ando, and DoorDash–among many, many others–all believe the future of food involves meals that are partially or fully prepared. But MealPal thinks people like to get out for lunch. “Getting out of the office is something that most employees are going to want to do during the course of a normal day anyway,” says MealPal founder Mary Biggins.

That insight might not hold true in the evening hours when people are more precious about their time. But Biggins believes delivery is too expensive for the demographic she’s targeting. “Delivery all in is going to cost you $15-$20 and that’s fine,” Biggins contends, “but it’s not something that most consumers can do every single day.” She’s focused on making MealPal an affordable habit rather than a cheap luxury, and that could set her business apart from a sea of delivery options. MealPal’s dinner, which launches today in New York City, is available in 20 and 12 packs for $130 and $84 per month, respectively.RR