THE founder of an app that helps consumers to order takeaways from a wide range of independents in Glasgow and Edinburgh without using the big three food delivery operations has won backing as he eyes expansion across the UK.

Callum McPherson has secured a six-figure investment from a consortium of business angels for his Secret Takeaways service, which allows consumers to search for independent businesses in their area that offer the kind of food they want.

Secret Takeaways has made a big impact during a period which has seen huge numbers of restaurants set up online operations in response to the challenges posed by the pandemic and related lockdowns.

More than 100 food and drink businesses are listed on the app, including Eusebi Deli in Glasgow and Shinsen Sushi in Edinburgh. It has been used by more than 70,000 people so far.

Mr McPherson reckons that by having a listing on Secret Takeaways restaurants can reach a wide audience without having to pay the kind of commissions charged by Deliveroo, Just Eat and Uber Eats.

“Once you have your website or app, the customer still has to find it in order to place an order,” noted Mr McPherson. “This is where Secret Takeaways has been able to step in and drive traffic directly to the restaurants who can save between £3 - £5 per order when a consumer orders directly from them.”

READ MORE: Food loving author spreads word about Scottish cuisine overseas

Mr McPherson said the service has saved tens of thousands of pounds for businesses in Edinburgh and Glasgow. It can also allow consumers to pay less for takeaways and to have them delivered than they would if ordering though one of the giants.

Businesses pay a £100 monthly fee for a listing on the app. The listings link though to the online ordering sites of the businesses concerned, which make their own arrangements for order processing, payments and deliveries.

Edinburgh-based Secret Takeaways employs eight people and expects to create six new jobs in areas such as engineering, sales and marketing to support its growth push.

READ MORE: Scots-Italian entrepreneur to open new Edinburgh restaurants

Mr McPherson, 30, also founded the Occupyd online ‘dark kitchen’ platform. This can be used by food businesses to find commercial kitchen space. He previously developed and sold a self-storage business and worked in marketing in the financial technology sector.