Investor Alert

June 16, 2021, 7:35 a.m. EDT

Jack in the Box jumps into the virtual restaurant business with Uber Eats and Jason Derulo

Tonya Garcia

Jack in the Box Inc. has launched a virtual restaurant with help from Uber Technologies Inc. and singer and “Cats” star Jason Derulo.

The One in a Milli Virtual Restaurant will be available on Uber Eats (NYS:UBER) in the Los Angeles area until June 28. Five items are on the menu, including a Bacon Churro Milli Shake, a vanilla milkshake made with bacon and Jack in the Box’s churro, and a Milli Meal, which has a Triple Bacon Cheesy Jack, Roost French fries, and mini chocolate croissant bites.

Jason Derulo, who has also become famous for his TikTok videos, celebrates the addition of a million new followers with a “Milli Meals” video in which he creates a dish. Derulo has 46.5 million Tiktok followers.

Outside of Los Angeles, the Milli Meal will be available exclusively through the Jack in the Box (NAS:JACK) app through August 8.

McDonald’s Corp. (NYS:MCD) has seen business results from its celebrity collaborations, which it calls the “Famous Orders” program.

See: McDonald’s launches BTS meal collaboration in the U.S. with merchandise drop

And food companies from Kroger Co. (NYS:KR) to Chili’s parent Brinker International Inc. (NYS:EAT) have expanded their digital businesses with virtual restaurants and ghost kitchens over the past year, a move in line with massive acceleration of digital ordering during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Brinker’s It’s Just Wings is expected to be $150 million brand in its first year.

Noodles & Co. (NAS:NDLS) launched a ghost kitchen in Chicago in late May . And Applebee’s, a Dine Brands Inc. (NYS:DIN) chain, launched Cosmic Wings in February.

Jack in the Box stock has rallied 27.3% for the year to date while the benchmark S&P 500 index (S&P:SPX) has gained 13.1% for the period.

Link to MarketWatch's Slice.