Nick Kokonas to leave booking company Tock next year – Robb Report

Game-changing booking platform Tock is changing direction.

Company founder Nick Kokonas will be leaving early in the new year, Eater Chicago reported Friday morning. Matthew Tucker, a veteran of online ordering platform Olo, will take over the company, Tock said in a press release.

When Kokonas launched Tock in 2014, it was a way to help fine dining establishments manage reservations and reduce no-shows. The platform allowed diners to pre-pay for meals at restaurants like the three-star Michelin Alinea, which Kokonas founded with chef Grant Achatz. As the site evolved, it introduced features like dynamic pricing and tip elimination.

Tock has managed to attract customers like Eleven Madison Park and the French Laundry. It has become the website of choice for Michelin-starred restaurants and tasting menu venues, as well as diners looking to score those coveted tables.

During the pandemic, Kokonas and his team worked quickly to transition Tock to a service that allowed pick-up and take-out orders, at a time when local shutdown mandates prevented people from dining in restaurants. In Tock To Go’s first 24 hours of availability, more than 250 restaurants across the country signed up for the service, and Kokonas helped them adapt their business model to the moment.

“Restaurants that usually do takeout? No problem,” Kokonas said. Robb Report at the time. “Some places want to put their whole menu online and we’re like, ‘Whoa, take it slow, keep it delicious and streamlined and grow over time as you get your sea legs.'”

Now Kokonas is ready for his next challenge, although he told Eater he wasn’t quite sure what to expect. “I’ve been working on it in one form or another since 2010 and I think about it constantly,” he said. “So this is going to be interesting…”

As for Tock, the company was acquired by Squarespace in March 2021 for $400 million. Since then, it has beefed up its workforce, and this month it launched a wine shop where wineries could sell directly to Tock customers. And at least for now, that’s still where you can try to get a reservation at Alinea de Kokonas.

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