After completing a $2.5 million pre-seed funding round, Ghost Financial is emerging from stealth mode to provide what it calls a “comprehensive financing and business services platform” for ghost kitchens and other restaurant ventures, including insurance, payroll, credit cards, and loans for startup and growing kitchens.

Ghost FInancial CEO John Meyer

Using an AI algorithm, Ghost Financial says it is able to make quick and accurate financial decisions to provide revenue-generating incentives like cashback credit cards to fund inventory expenses, as well as provide data-informed expansion loan decisions. The platform says it provides a low-risk way for emerging restaurant brands to enter their first market and effectively expand into others.

During its pre-seed round, Ghost Financial secured a 50-50 gender split of investors, after making a “monumental” effort to bring in female angels and female-led funds. Pre-seed investors for Ghost Financial include HOF Capital, 305 Ventures, Hustle Fund, Active Capital, Anthony Ghosn, The Council, Amber Illig, Dr. Molly Maloof, Sarah Kaney, Meg Fitzpatrick, Samantha Stein, Sabrina Halper, Kosinski Ventures, House Capital, Starship Ventures, Ben Yu, Adam Guild, Cory Levy, Ditec Ventures, Draft Ventures, Pareto20, Kepler Operator Fund, and more.

In a release announcing its new funding, the company cited the pandemic fueling a rise in ghost kitchens, citing research showing that, by 2030, ghost kitchens will be a one trillion dollar industry.

After owning his own ghost kitchen in Austin, Texas, for the past year, John Meyer, CEO and founder of Ghost Financial, saw the major need for a fintech company within the ghost kitchen space.

As a ghost kitchen operator himself, Meyer saw that most ghost kitchen and restaurant operators buy their inventory using cash or a debit card, and spend a minimum of five figures per month on such inventory. He added that ghost kitchen and restaurant operators struggle to know where to go for payroll and insurance, and that adding even just a single percentage point in profit margins can be “game changing” to profit margins.

“It’s great to see a platform that is focused on building up the restaurant and food industry with new opportunities and a more cost-effective approach after the last two difficult years,” said Russel Jackson, owner of the Reverence restaurant in Harlem, New York. “Now that startups and small independent restaurants have a solid partner to rely on through Ghost Financial, they are able to shorten the curve on their path to success.”