Cava & Compass Group Named 2018 World’s Most Innovative Companies by Fast Company

Most Innovative Companies, LevelUp, CRM, Mobile Ordering, Digital Engagement

Exciting news! Fast Company released their list of most innovative companies for 2018. Among them included technology powerhouses like Apple, Netflix and Amazon. We’re proud to announce that among the honorees were two of LevelUp’s partner restaurants.


Cava snagged a coveted spot on the list for their innovative use of data.  If you haven’t had a chance to check them out yet, Cava is a fast-casual chain that guests flock to for amazing Mediterranean flavors.

With a data-driven approach, Cava doubled its number of restaurants (it now has 45, in Washington, D.C., New York and Los Angeles) and increased profitability by 15% over 2016.

As the nomination suggests, Cava realizes the importance of data in serving their guests well. For example, they’ve set up sensors in their locations that collect valuable information about guests. Cava’s team of data scientists looks at that data “to devise new ways to speed patrons through lines, increase food quality, prevent spoilage, and anticipate how much food to prepare.”

Cava also “added an intuitive ordering app, which offers pickup times based on actual store activity and has boosted productivity at outposts.”

LevelUp powers that intuitive app.

Most Innovative Companies, LevelUp, CRM, Mobile Ordering, Digital Engagement

The Cava app builds incredible experience for Cava guests and business stakeholders alike. With the app, guests can easily pay at the counter and order their favorite meals ahead to skip the line. They can also find the nearest Cava location and earn rewards with every purchase they make.

In conjunction, Cava begins learning about their guests from the second they download and register for their app. As guests continue to use the app, a more complete profile of who they are (when they like to visit, their favorite menu items & much more) begins to form. LevelUp’s powerful dashboard sorts all of that information to create a clear picture of who Cava’s clientele is. 

With the dashboard, Cava can intelligently segment guests into groups with similar behaviors and characteristics. Those segments empower Cava to craft marketing messaging and allocate budget toward promotions that will actually resonate.

LevelUp’s data shows that customers who receive data-backed promotions have a 73% higher LTV than those that do not:

Most Innovative Companies, LevelUp, CRM, Mobile Ordering, Digital Engagement

Compass Group

Also making the list is Compass Group, for “putting a fresh spin on cafeteria grub”. Compass is a multi-billion-dollar company that runs thousands of cafeterias around the world–from schools to stadiums to museums.  LevelUp is proud to power Compass Group’s payment and rewards app, CaféPay.

Most Innovative Companies, LevelUp, CRM, Mobile Ordering, Digital Engagement


The app helps Compass Group improve their bottom line by attracting and retaining more loyal guests. It’s also amazing for guests to be able to pay, earn and redeem loyalty rewards for both food and coffee.

Of course, Compass Group is also hitting the ground running with making data-empowered decisions about their guests with data collected via the app and other digital touchpoints. 

To learn more about how LevelUp helped successful brands like Compass Group and Cava achieve these results, download our case study on how to use guest data to improve your restaurant:


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Jackie Cooke

Jackie Cooke

Jacqueline Cooke is the Digital Content Marekting Manager at LevelUp. She's a firm believer in the power of avocado toast and chocolate chip banana pancakes. When she’s not trying out LevelUp partner restaurants (hello, Dig Inn!) you can find her dreaming up travel plans, trying out a new workout class or listening to her laundry list of podcasts. Read about her latest antics at