Velocity Crêpes

Selling Crêpes out of a bike-cart in downtown Grand Rapids, by using a vacuum pack cooking process.

What's the big idea?

Vacuum packing Crêpes allow us to pre-make our tasty treats so that we reduce long wait times and keep potential buyers from getting a hotdog instead. Catering and large events, like ArtPrize, are high profit days. Being mobile and dipping them in boiling water to reheat will reduce the prep time by over half, allowing us to serve over 100 Crêpes per hour instead of just over 50. Mobile vending is growing and we are filing a void in the GR market with an innovative cooking process, and the only Crêpe specific Café around. Our eyes are set on rapid expansion with investors in other markets.

Describe the nearest player in your field.

The Red Jet Café is a full service dinner that sells Crêpes. There are no mobile Crêpe businesses in Grand Rapids, though they do exist in Chicago and NYC.

How are you different from that player?

Our sweet and savory menu, cooking precess, and mobility set us apart from competitors. Overhead is less for catering and renting a space. Street visibility will allow instant brand recognition.

How does this idea scale into a big business?

Velocity Crêpes will generate a high profit margin with low cost. We will be operating in two cities, Grand Rapids and Providence, RI, by the end of this year, and franchising after that.

Why are you the one to run with this idea?

We, Chris and Tom, have developed the cooking process and both don’t mind working 70hr weeks if it reaps the desired reward. Entrepreneurship is in our blood and right now all we can think about is Crêpes!

What is a $5,000 experiment you can do to move your idea forward?

Licensing, building the Crêpe cart, operating in the downtown morning, lunch, and late night markets and legal advice from Start Garden for franchising to other markets.

There have been 20 replies to this page

  1. Chris Owen


    What Crêpe flavors do you think we should make?

  2. Annie Quinlan

    Just the basic sweet crepes sounds like a good way to start out.

  3. Mrittika Ghosh

    I’m also a fan of savory crêpes :) simple mushroom or spinach?

  4. Dale Domer

    I like sugar and lemon juice, strawberries, and a little whipped cream.

  5. Nathan Carl Straathof

    I like Nutella and cheese!

  6. Daniel Kibbey

    Tom is a friend if mine, and had done a remarkable job with buisness in the past! I fully endorse Tom and his new venture, I’m sure the crepes will be delicious! He is a hard worker and will make it happen, support this buisness it will be a winner! Thanks!

  7. Ray Brown

    It’d be great if you could find a way to reuse or recycle all of the plastic waste from the vacuum sealed crêpes, or find a way around that process completely. I wonder if you could steam them right before heading to location and then use a portable food warmer box (the kind that caterers use) to transport and preserve the warmed crêpes. I’m all about bike carts of any kind showing up in GR (I’ve even debated starting my own), and I wish you all the best!

  8. Joyce Christian

    Have veggie crepes as well as sweat.  This way you can have lunch and desert at same location!

  9. Lizzie Williams

    Are my dreams finally coming true????

  10. Paul Hiatt


  11. Nichole Smith


    How long have you been up and running in MoDiv?

  12. Chris Owen


    We have a walk through of the space today and are working on licensing. Winning this will help greatly to speed up the process.

  13. Tom Olson

    Hi Ray,
    Your concerns are mine as well. Unfortunately, we have to find another way around a law that states vending units can only cook pre-made food products, like hotdogs ext. That isn’t the only reason why we want to try our cooking process since it looks like it will reap large profits in the catering and high traffic event market. The triple bottom line has always been my focus, but until we can cook food start to finish on the crepe cart we will have to give this vacuum pack cooking method a shot. If you have any ideas how we can avoid using so much plastic Chris and I are all ears. If our customers are happy we are happy!

  14. Sabrina Olson

    Unless you try to do something beyond what you’ve already mastered, you will never grow.
    Chase your dreams and never give up :) what a great idea guys:)

  15. Carrie Dubbs Brzezinski

    I just had an egg & cheese crepe this week and it was breakfast of champions!

  16. Mike McKinnon

    I LOVE this idea and you have my vote.

  17. Theresa Marshall

    You have my vote!

  18. Tom Olson

    This is it everyone, 1hour and 10 minutes till voting officially ends. If there is anyone else in Grand Rapids or friends who you know would benefit from this idea let them know now. We are starting this business with the intentions of rapid expansion into other cities so it may find it’s way into many places in the U.S. Also, Like the facebook page or go to and sign up for our email listing by clicking the “Blue Crepe post button” to receive further updates.

  19. Cheryl Brandt

    Very creative, gentlemen!  I am excited for you, and look forward to these yummy treats.  Hit up Unity Fest this year!

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This idea was funded by public endorsement on January 17, 2013.