DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – 2021 begins with restaurant owners still trying to earn money lost during the pandemic. Many had to find creative ways to keep their doors open in 2020.

Dublin Pub owner Steve Tieber said even with the holidays, business has been down in the last month and a half.

“It’s extremely difficult right now, and especially going into what is traditionally the worst month in sales which is January,” Tieber said. “So we’re all kind of bracing for the winter.”

Realizing restaurants need to meet their bottom line, but customers are asked to stay home, 937 Delivers was launched on November 27.

In just over a month, more than 1,800 deliveries were made and $20,000 stayed in the pockets of local restaurants.

“The metrics on it are really great and the support’s been really great and we look forward to continuing to grow and build this service,” 937 Delivers Marketing Contractor Brian Johnson said.

Johnson, who is also one of the owners of Pizza Bandit, said the delivery service accounted for 20 to 25% of Pizza Bandit’s weekly revenue.

“When we’re sitting here trying to add two and three percent here and there, wherever we can save two and three percent, to have this service come in and give us an additional 20%, it could mean the difference between us taking a temporary closure and us remaining open,” Johnson said.

The service allows restaurants to step away from food delivery apps, which keeps up to one third of every sale.

For restaurants like Dublin Pub, where carry out makes up 25% of business, Tieber says 937 Delivers is a big help.

“We’re all reworking our business models, reworking our strategies, trying to come up with new ways of staying afloat,” Tieber said. “There’s a lot of good ideas out there, but this delivery service is working really well and there’s been a lot of great local support.

937 delivers covers a 5 mile radius in the Dayton area, this year Johnson said they hope to expand their delivery area and add two to three new restaurants a week.