Based in picturesque Ghent, Bar Jan Cremer has been serving coffee, hot drinks and home-made snacks since 2013. With delivery channels growing in popularity, Owner Rudy Victor Ackaert reached out to Deliverect in order to optimise his delivery operation.
Bar Jan Cremer isn’t Rudy Victor’s first business venture. Having set up one of Ghent’s most iconic nightclubs, Culture Club, as well as a number of other nightlife venues, Rudy Victor was ready for a new challenge. Initially, he was looking into the idea of a mobile coffee bar or truck - a concept that was quite innovative at the time. The lightbulb moment, however, came when he realised the potential of the property which currently houses the bar.
“The Overpoort street, which is known as the city’s student nightlife hub, is crowded in the evenings and at night until the early hours of the morning,” Rudy Victor says. “But I noticed that there was no place for students to enjoy a drink during the day. The few cafés and bars which were around at the time didn’t have outdoor seating, which seemed like a big shortcoming. I wanted to create a cosy hang-out for students, a fun and relaxing place to come together in between and after classes.”
“Bar Jan Cremer jumped on the delivery bandwagon before it was cool - seeing the opportunity to serve customers even when the weather was a let-down”
Bar Jan Cremer jumped on the delivery bandwagon before it was cool - seeing the opportunity to serve customers even when the weather was a let-down (it is Belgium, after all) and to enter the office delivery segment.
“Right now, delivery channels account for around 5 to 10% of all our sales. Our terrace is still the star of the show, and we don’t expect - or intend - this to change in the future. However, we are looking into our delivery operation to see how we can get the most out of it and stand out from competing businesses. In the near future, we want to start with a breakfast and brunch offering through delivery, a segment which I believe is on the rise. At the moment we often get big office orders in and we know there’s a peak moment when it’s raining. Our next step is to proactively look for new business, by introducing the Jan Cremer breakfast, for instance.”
“Before Deliverect, I received monthly statements which mentioned VAT, but customers who ordered food online, didn’t get their VAT ticket. According to the law, I wasn’t compliant. Deliverect solved this issue and I don’t have to worry about this anymore.”
In some countries, including Belgium, food businesses are obligated to work with an “anti-fraud” cash register with a fiscal add-on (the so-called black box), which registers all operations. Additionally, every customer that’s served food must receive a valid VAT receipt. “For me, that was the main reason for signing up with Deliverect,” says Rudy Victor. Before Deliverect, I received monthly statements which mentioned VAT, but online orders weren’t sent to the cash register. Customers who ordered food online, didn’t get their VAT ticket. According to the law, I wasn’t compliant. Deliverect solved this issue and I don’t have to worry about this anymore.”
“What also drew me in was the sales reporting. It’s great to have such a clear overview of all delivery orders and it’s much clearer for the kitchen what’s been ordered, no matter the channel. I haven’t gotten around to checking out the other features like the menu builder, but I soon will once we go live with our breakfast and brunch offer.”
The bar is named after Jan Cremer, a Dutch author-painter who was big - even in America - in the sixties, embodying the era’s “rock ’n’ roll” lifestyle. Ironically, it’s a name that nowadays doesn’t ring a bell with the majority of the rock ’n’ rolling students coming here for a latte.
But the Jan Cremer is much more than just another coffee place. On the menu you’ll find home-made cakes and desserts, as well as bagels, grilled and oven-baked sandwiches with tasty filling combinations. The bar’s relaxed atmosphere and casual feel, which in summer is all about the beach chairs and sun umbrellas, attracts students, locals and tourists alike.