September 27, 2023

Axial Shift Lands $4 Million in Seed Funding from Silverton Partners to Feed Restaurant Growth by Empowering the Frontline

Restaurant team discussing Axial Shift's latest contest in their pre-shift meeting.

Axial Shift to Accelerate the Next Generation Operations Platform, Founded by Restaurant Veteran and Led by HotSchedules Founding Executives

AUSTIN, TX – September 27, 2023 – Axial Shift, the restaurant operations software provider that is revolutionizing the restaurant industry by providing all-staff level data access, as well as team member competitions and rewards, today announces a new partnership and $4M in seed funding from Silverton Partners.

About the Platform

Axial Shift creates gamified incentives that empower and engage frontline managers and staff, while providing actionable insights through real-time data from POS systems. The platform aims to simplify restaurant management and make frontline jobs more appealing, thereby improving staff retention rates. 

Managers are able to foster healthy competition among team members, create contests, and set goals for frontline teams. Staff can see – in real time – how they are performing throughout their shift. They can earn badges, chase monetary incentives, and create winning streaks. Their efforts are benchmarked across teams to create an experience that makes work feel more like play and increased sales feel more like personal accomplishments. The result is empowered frontline managers, engaged staff, and increased sales across locations. 

Using the Axial Shift platform, managers can also run their shift from their phones, showing real time labor actuals vs forecast vs ideal. They can also understand tip percentages in real time,  review sales mix, and see how targeted items are selling by team member or location. 

The Axial Shift platform also includes integrated tools that allow operators to consolidate their current tech stack, such as solutions for tip pooling, improved online scheduling, messaging across the entire organization, time and attendance, and access to a marketplace that allows them to integrate with popular apps, such as Airtable, Google Apps, Slack, and more. 

Axial Shift customer, Brian Pearson, who is CTO of Mendocino Farms said, “With Axial Shift, we’re not only improving the quality and timeliness of information we give to our operations teams, we are reimagining ways to drive new value!”

About the Leadership

The leadership of the company is a trio of seasoned professionals from the restaurant industry. Justin Buckley, CEO and President, and Matt Woodings, Chief Technology Officer were both founding members of the executive team at HotSchedules, which ultimately served over 70,000 restaurants in 27 countries. Ellis Winstanley, who serves as Executive Chairman, founded Axial Shift to solve firsthand challenges operating eight restaurants, including Austin’s famous El Arroyo. 

Buckley said, “We’re excited to partner with Silverton Partners. This reinforces our mission to bring the next phase of innovation to restaurant operations and will expand our platform to help more restaurants increase sales and make work more enjoyable and rewarding for their teams.”

About the Funding

Mike Dodd, General Partner with Silverton Partners said, “With Axial, we see an extremely exciting opportunity to truly change an industry for the better. Axial brings a new approach to doing business that drives higher strategic sales growth across locations – and they are doing it with a leadership team that has a proven track record in this industry across the last 20+ years.” 

Axial Shift CEO and President Justin Buckley said, “This funding is really a tribute to the hard work of the Axial Shift team and their continued enthusiasm for what we do. I could not be more pleased and proud to have the recognition and support of Silverton, and I look forward to the next phase of our business growth!” 

About Axial Shift

Axial Shift is a restaurant operations software provider that is revolutionizing the restaurant industry by creating gamified incentives that empower and engage frontline managers and staff, while providing actionable insights through real-time data from POS systems. Based in Austin, TX and founded in 2017, the company is led by industry veterans Justin Buckley, CEO and President, and Matt Woodings, CTO. Axial Shift is ideal for restaurants of all sizes, from independent single units to large chains. Customers include Mendocino Farms, El Arroyo, Chicken Express, Johnny Rockets and Sugar Factory. For more information, visit

About Silverton Partners

The Silverton team partners with entrepreneurs who are dedicated to tackling growth markets and building lasting companies. In partnering with Silverton, companies benefit from its vast network and expertise from decades of growing and investing in successful businesses. Silverton Partners is based in Austin, TX, and was the initial institutional investor for AlertMedia, Billie, SailPoint, Storable, Silicon Labs, Self Financial, Apprentice, TurnKey Vacation Rentals, Ontic, WP Engine and The Zebra among others. For more information, please visit  

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