Whether you have just a few vending machines or a whole fleet spread across numerous locations, there comes a point in the machine lifecycle when a decision just has to be made.  Should I refurb or replace?  It’s always a tough call.  Or is it?

Investing in new technology represents a considerable cash injection which has to be offset against projected revenues.  It’s a financial risk and consequently many major vending operators are starting to appreciate the potential of a carefully planned refurbishment programme as a cost-effective way of extending the working life of the machine.

One area in particular that is of major benefit in the refurb process is the recent advance in lighting technology.

No matter how much revenue a machine is generating, poor quality lighting will have a definite impact on sales.  For that reason, looking at options for upgrading the lighting should be a priority in any refurb.  The opportunity to create a more attractive ‘vending space’ which has max appeal for today’s fickle grab and go consumers, should not be overlooked.

Some of the new optical LED lighting solutions, for example, is comparable to that used in contemporary retail environments and can change the entire look and feel of the machine.  Alongside an upgrade to the telemetry system, chiller unit and graphics interface an investment in good lighting, whether that is an off the shelf or bespoke solution, can help create a ‘next generation’ product.

Choosing the right solution for the application will reduce power consumption and heat output whilst maximising the lighting efficiency.  The top cap, product display area and collection point will all benefit from additional illumination and the enhanced consumer experience will encourage consumers to part with more of their cash – we are aware of customers who have achieved up to a 30% increase in sales after a machine refurbishment.

Expect a more energy efficient unit with a reduced eco footprint following a refurb. Most importantly, the life of the machine should be extended by up to five years. And if you are a savvy vending operator, what’s not to like about that?

Linzi Sahota-Moore,

Commercial Director, Abbeychart

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