Pinky Cole is not only the founder of high-profile vegan burger restaurant chain Slutty Vegan, but she now holds the title of DoorDash chief restaurant advisor, aka the voice of the industry.
The Atlanta business owner recently started her one-year term for the door delivery app. DoorDash said in a press release that it reached out to Cole “to better bridge gaps in relationships with restaurant partners.”
Cole is the second person to fill the role at DoorDash, the first being Stephanie Izard, a owner of the Chicago-based restaurant Girl & The Goat.
“Pinky’s ambitious entrepreneurial mindset for expanding her restaurant empire, coupled with her love for connecting with the communities she operates within through the Pinky Cole Foundation, makes her an ideal operator to assume the role of Chief Restaurant Advisor,” Tom Pickett, DoorDash’s chief revenue officer, said in a press release about the company choosing Cole for the role. “We’re confident that Pinky’s experience scaling Slutty Vegan from a ghost kitchen to a food truck to multiple brick and mortar locations will bring an invaluable perspective to our company — especially as we continue to see the resilient nature and entrepreneurial spirit of the industry.”
Before Slutty Vegan, she also worked as a Dasher in Los Angeles. She told VegNews that “serving as chief restaurant advisor is a full-circle moment for me.”
Cole first opened her business in 2018, and, like many businesses, faced adversity as she weathered the struggles of the COVID-19 pandemic. But since clearing the hurdles, Slutty Vegan has become a media darling — and a money maker.
According to a “CNBC Make It” estimate, Slutty Vegan made between $10 million and $14 million in revenue in 2021. And in May 2022, Slutty Vegan received an $25 million influx of investments through a Series A funding round campaign. The business is now valued at $100 million.
Slutty Vegan has four brick-and-mortar locations across Atlanta, and openings are slated in Athens, Georgia; in Birmingham, Alabama; and Baltimore, Maryland.
In addition to her position at DoorDash, she plans to expand her business further using the recent round of funding, some of which came from Danny Meyer, the founder of Shake Shack.