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Vol. 46, No. 9, September 2006

Vending Features
Aramark Board OKs Plan By Investor Group To Acquire Company In $8.3 Billion Merger
Tim Sanford
PHILADELPHIA — Aramark Corp. announced the signing of a definitive merger agreement under which its chairman and chief executive officer, Joseph Neubauer, and investment funds managed by GS Capital Partners, CCMP Capital Advisors and J.P. Morgan Partners, Thomas H. Lee Partners and Warburg Pincus LLC will acquire the company. The transaction is valued at about $8.3 billion, including the assumption or repayment of some $2 billion of debt.

Keurig Introduces Versatile B200 Commercial Brewer
Tim Sanford
WAKEFIELD, MA — New from Keurig Inc. is the B200, a single-cup brewer designed for mid-sized offices. Featuring sleek, upscale design, the new machine offers a range of advanced features. The B200 can be used as a pour-through when a water-line connection is impractical, or it may be plumbed in. The back panel is configured to accommodate a filter when the brewer is connected to a location’s potable-water supply.

State-Of-The-Art Advancements Add To Appeal Of ‘Closed’ Cashless Systems
Emily Jed
U.S.A. — With the current buzz centered around credit card acceptance and mobile phones for vending machine purchases, most operators are enticed by the potential, but leery of their ability to justify the associated transaction costs on low-ticket items. While “closed” systems limit access to the population that is issued a prepaid debit card can’t capture the credit card swipes of an increasingly cashless consumer base, operators are reporting that installing such technology has reaped measurable rewards for their clients, customers and bottom lines.

Vendors Exchange Enhances Service Dept., Upgrades Computer System And Website
Emily Jed
CLEVELAND — Vendors Exchange International has revamped, updated and expanded its service repair department and implemented a major computer upgrade. The changes enable the company to better support its inventory of 29,000 different replacement parts and more than 8,000 vending machines and maintain its track record of shipping 93% of its orders complete the first time.

Music and Games Features
Booming China Shakes World Economy; Aftershocks Hit U.S. Amusement Industry
Marcus Webb
U.S.A. — Mainland China represents a $1.6 trillion powerhouse that is quickly accelerating toward becoming the world’s largest economy – a status it is expected to achieve by 2039. Today, the explosive growth of this Asian giant is reshaping the world.

NDA Recommends Flexible Strategies To Increase Darts Revenue And League Traffi
Marcus Webb
INDIANAPOLIS — Dart operators nationwide are discovering how flexible scheduling formats and in-house (non-traveling) programs are effective strategies to boost player participation in local leagues, according to leaders of the National Dart Association.

You’ve Come A Long Way, Baby: Personal Reminiscences Of Growing With IALEI
by Frank Seninsky
HERSHEY, PA — The International Association for the Leisure and Entertainment Industry was originally launched on December 1, 1993, under a different name: the International Association of Family Entertainment Centers. At that time, the association had a very small budget and consisted of a dozen operator and supplier charter members, along with a few volunteers.

Bulk Vending
October’s Bulk Operators Super Show Will Feature Expanded Educational Sessions, Mentoring Program
Hank Schlesinger
TIMONIUM, MD — This year’s Bulk Operators Super Show, which plays host to some of the bulk vending industry’s leading manufacturers and suppliers, will feature a variety of educational seminars and workshops in addition to the customary trade show format. Currently slated for October 5 through 8, the fifth annual gathering of small and mid-sized bulk vending operators will return to the Days Inn located in Timonium, MD. BOSS offers industry members from across the country the opportunity to meet, greet and learn how to better their businesses.

Editorial: Vending
EDITORIAL: Progress And Otherwise
Tim Sanford
Much has been written and said about the danger of complacency, the “comfort zone,” thinking “inside the box” and so on. We think more attention should be paid to the reciprocal danger of change for the sake of change, or confusing activity with action ...by Tim Sanford

Editorial: Music and Games
EDITORIAL: How To Transform The Industry
Marcus Webb
The heart of this industry’s problems today is not a lack of new technology, lack of aggressive marketing, nor the negative elements of its history. The heart of this industry’s problems today lies in its widespread public image as a lower-class, or at least “less classy,” services provider...by Marcus Webb

Upfront with the Publisher
UPFRONT: How Do Small Operators Survive…And Flourish?
Alicia Lavay

One of the pleasures of conducting our annual survey of operators for the VT Census of the Industry is the comments we receive from people responding to it. This year, one of them complained that the “little guy” too often is not recognized as playing an important role in the vending industry, or even as belonging to it ...by Alicia Lavay-Kertes

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