January 1st, 2019
By Jeff Adair, Editor

Driverless vehicles are no longer a fantasy. What’s not certain is how long it will be before they are considered safe to use on a large scale. When that time arrives, there’s no question they will bring significant benefits to service industries like vending and refreshment services.

Which is why Canteen, the nation’s largest vending and refreshment services provider, has been studying this new technology.

Scott Denhard, president of the North Carolina Vending Association and vice president of franchise business development for Canteen, offered an overview about the benefits driverless vehicles will bring to vending and refreshment services at this year’s Atlantic Coast Expo in Myrtle Beach, S.C.

“How does this impact the efficiency of our operations?” Denhard asked. “What is the impact going to be three to five years from now?”

Canteen has looked at driverless vehicles from both the consumer’s and the company’s vantage points, Denhard said. Once driverless vehicles are in use, the convenience dining industry will be using them. The vehicles will be part of a business model in which food manufacturers deliver product to distributors, who send them to convenience service operators, who deliver them to locations that make them available to consumers.

Invenda , a Luzern, Switzerland provider of intelligent vending solutions powered by Intel, has entered the U.S. market, offering its modular retrofit technology for both new and old vending machines.

The company provides a machine retrofit that enables centralized device management, including facial recognition, real-time inventory control, digital signage, remote pricing and telematics. The machine communicates with an operator’s home office via a secure wireless cloud connection. 

The core of the retrofit technology, which runs on Windows 10 IoT Enterprise with Microsoft Azure, is an Intel-powered vending machine brain that provides centralized device management with real-time inventory, product bundling, digital signage and demographics. 

Coldtainer USA , providers of portable containers that can be used for precise temperature control in any transportation application, has introduced a solution for temperature-controlled transport.

“Coldtainers are a very flexible and convenient solution for professionals who have to transport perishable goods while still maintaining health and safety standards,” said Terry Koerner, general manager of Coldtainer USA. “The direct expansion refrigerated containers are a portable and cost-effective technology for transporting food, medical and pharmaceutical supplies when precise temperature control and freeze protection capabilities are needed.”

“Coldtainers are the perfect product for companies that need flexibility,” Koerner added. “They provide options for meeting a variety of logistics needs and for transporting mixed loads at a much lower upfront, operating and maintenance cost than traditional refrigeration units. As a standalone technology, Coldtainers don’t require insulated and outfitted vans or trucks, which also lowers capital costs and improves resale values because non-converted units are more attractive to a wider range of used vehicle buyers.”

European coffee and vending machine service provider café+co International has selected Nayax Ltd. as its exclusive cashless solution provider under a 5-year partnership agreement. Onyx and VPOS Touch, Nayax’s card readers with telemetric capabilities, will be installed on approximately 25,000 café+co machines, bringing multiple cashless payment options to consumers in Austria, Czech Republic, Poland, Slovenia and Slovakia. 

Introducing telemetry and remote monitoring gives café+co real-time sales data and other machine activity data. The company will also use Monyx Wallet, Nayax’s own digital payment app, to engage consumers on a more personal level and increase loyalty with discounts, digital punch cards and other exclusive promotions.

“Upgrading our operations is a top priority and we have been searching for an all-inclusive solution that will help us improve our sales and operations for a long time,” said Fritz Kaltenegger, CEO of café+co International. 

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