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Virus-fighting code

Andy Lim, right, helps Asian Noodle Bar co-owner Ving Sayachack install the QR code system on Wednesday. Lim, former CEO of Albuquerque-based Lavu, has introduced a QR code system for restaurants that allows customers to order and pay from menus without touching anything but their phones – and the food.(Kevin Robinson-Avila/Journal

Copyright © 2020 Albuquerque Journal

Former Lavu CEO Andy Lim is helping restaurants navigate the coronavirus crisis with a new QR code system for ultrafast online takeout and delivery services.

QR, or “quick response” codes, are not new. They’re used widely across the globe, although U.S. businesses have been slow to deploy them, said Lim, who co-founded Lavu, an Albuquerque startup that offers an online management platform for restaurants and bars.

The codes contain information that consumers can instantly transfer to cell bright spotphones by taking a picture of it. The code can contain links to websites, geo-coordinates, messages and more, depending on what the restaurant wants. Lim is now personalizing restaurant and bar information with QR codes to connect them with on-the-go patrons who can then order from menus on their phones without having to download an app.

“They just scan the bar code with their phone camera, choose what they want and send the order, which goes directly to the restaurant kitchen,” Lim said. “Online payment is simultaneously processed and after the food is prepared, they get a message that it’s ready for pick up to just grab it and walk out.”

The system could help in the current crisis, since the state ordered all food establishments and bars to shut down their table services and limit operations solely to takeout and deliveries.

“Restaurants are really suffering right now and many don’t have the technology to deal with this situation,” Lim said. “We can help them, and when things return to normal, this will continue to make their operations more efficient.”

The QR code service is now part of Lim’s latest startup, Addmi LLC, which he launched in 2016 after stepping down as Lavu CEO. Addmi offers an online event-management platform that’s now used by nearly 600 U.S. organizations.

To obtain the QR code system, which the company is installing for free, restaurants must register through Addmi. Businesses only need an iPad to register and install the service. They can include the QR code on their websites, blast it out through social media, and even print out stickers to post on doors, windows, tables or countertops.

Lim’s team has already installed it at 15 local food and drink establishments, including the Asian Noodle Bar Downtown.

“This helps us with the coronavirus,” said Asian Noodle Bar owner Mimy Singvilay. “It gives us more exposure … and it keeps everybody sanitized, because customers don’t have to touch menus or anything else.”

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