The concept is nothing new: You buy something and a portion of the proceeds go to benefit someone else. It makes you feel better about times you spent money on some crap you probably didn’t really need. But let’s say you went into a Downtown LA restaurant and bought a Jamaican jerk chicken bowl for $8.95 with the knowledge that your money would be used to underwrite the sale identical Jamaican jerk chicken bowls sold for just $4.50 at another restaurant location only a few miles away in a poorer neighborhood in South LA. Would that give you the same feeling? Or would it make you feel cheated
The forthcoming Los Angeles-based mini-chain Everytable is hoping customers will feel their business model is more of the former than the latter when that exact plan comes to fruition this year. The brand’s first outpost in South LA debuts this Saturday with the second Downtown location coming this fall. Menu items will be the same – literally cooked in the same central kitchen – but prices will be set by the needs of the neighborhood. “We don’t love the word subsidize because each store is designed to be individually profitable,” co-founder and chief executive Sam Polk told the New York Times, explaining his company’s unique model. “I think it’s similar to Toms, where you buy a pair of shoes knowing that someone else in some needy part of the world is going to get a similar pair of shoes for nothing,” he later elaborated.