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Incentive Pay Might Gets Results,But Not Always The Ones You Want
Issue: Vol. 50, No. 2, February 2010
After almost two years of finger-pointing, it is clear that there is no one villain who can be blamed for the problems facing the economy. Everyone -- politicians, bankers, mortgage brokers, Wall Street, rating agencies, speculators and even ordinary citizens - must accept some level of responsibility for what we allowed to happen. If we hope to prevent it from happening again, we have to identify our mistakes and learn from them. One mistake is incentive pay -- and I promise the problem is relevant to vending and OCS... by Allan Z. Gilbert
Author: by Allan Z. Gilbert

High-End Merchandise Is Changing How We Operate
Issue: Vol. 49, No.12, December 2009
The hottest trend in the industry today is a new approach to merchandising that offers very high-end prizes of $50 and up. Today we have several top “workhorse’”earners in the merchandiser category such as Winners’ Cube, Barbercut Lite, ’s Amazing Road Trip, Stacker, Lighthouse, X-Prize and Time 2 Win. Together, these games have made 2009 the hottest year for merchandisers since triple cranes... by Frank Seninsky
Author: Frank Seninsky

How Operators Can Profit From Raw Thrills' Top 10 Success Secrets
Issue: Vol. 50, No.1, January 2010
Coin-op videogame manufacturers have come uncomfortably close to being put on the Endangered Species List in recent years. The number of suppliers that are no longer with us is painfully long, from legendary U.S. giants like Midway and Atari to Japanese powerhouses like Capcom and Data East. And many survivors were forced to merge. But a relative newcomer has succeeded in a tough industry during a very difficult decade of consolidation and retrenchment... by Kevin Williams
Author: by Kevin Williams

Stretching Dollars In The Recession - And Having Fun Doing It
Issue: Vol. 49, No.12, December 2009
I like getting good deals on things, and finding out about deals that not many people know about. In today's economy, we all have an incentive to look for bargains... In fact, I think that bargain hunting has turned into something of a sport. I am not affiliated with any of these websites, but I honestly think that using certain sites to find great deals not only is easy to do, but also leads to substantial savings... by Dave Levine
Author: by Dave Levine

WHAT THE MARKET WANTS: Five Proven Reasons To Offer Online Ordering
Issue: Vol. 49, No.10, October 2009
As an OCS operator in today’s world, you probably have been approached at one time or another by someone suggesting your company should have a website. Perhaps you’ve given it some thought on your own, or maybe been asked by a customer or two. It probably doesn’t take a lot of time for you to think of other OCS companies you know of that have websites. It really doesn’t matter whether they are acquaintances, friends, industry suppliers or direct competitors; at some point, something compelled them to make the decision to go online... by Richard Smith
Author: by Richard Smith

When Your Well-Meaning Professional Says, 'It Won’t Work,' It Usually Means, 'I Don’t Know'
Issue: Vol. 49, No.10, October 2009
Succession is the most common problem that perplexes business owners who want to sell or transfer their business to their kids or employees, and their professional advisors are stumped when it comes to most tax effective way to implement the sale/transfer. I’ll bet the farm that this article will save many business owners (who want to transfer the family business to their kids) a ton of taxes... by Irvine L. Blackman
Author: by Irvine L. Blackman

SURPRISE! The ‘Jukebox Era’ Has Arrived … For Videogames
Issue: Vol. 49, No.9, September 2009
Question: How is a 2009 amusement videogame like a jukebox? Answer: in more ways than many industry members might imagine. In the simplest terms, the music industry now regards the downloading jukebox not as a competitor to home sales, nor as an irrelevancy, but rather, as a great way to introduce new music to the public. And now, something oddly similar could be happening with videogames... by Kevin Williams
Author: by Kevin Williams

Placing Proper Value On Your Skills Helps To Maintain Clients' Respect
Issue: Vol. 49, No.9, September 2009
Before I started developing wireless signs for vending machines, I was a vend operator. Before that, I was a financial advisor. There are a lot of things that I learned as a financial advisor that carried over to vending, but one seems especially relevant today -- my old boss used to say "don't give away the secret sauce…" by Dave Levine
Author: Dave Levine

Private Placement Life Insurance: An Easy Way To Maximize Your Investment Income
Issue: Vol. 49, No.9, September 2009
This article continues my quest to lead the education parade for my readers in the areas of "How to make it" and "How to keep it." Today's subject matter -- a little-known strategy -- goes to the head of the class not only as a star income tax saver, but also an estate tax destroyer and a superior asset protection device. And there is a single strategy that does all three.... by Irvine L. Blackman
Author: by Irvine L. Blackman

THE FAMILY BUSINESS: A Never Ending Saga, Or Taxes, Economics And Human Emotions
Issue: Vol. 49, No.8, August 2009
Almost all readers of this column with tax problems who contact me are owners or part owners of a family business. Each has a unique story, and most would make an exciting, interesting and fascinating real-life TV drama. The typical owner has one or more problems... which the family can't solve... nor can their professionals. The problems typically fall into one of three specific categories... by Irv Blackman
Author: by Irv Blackman

Could This Be The End Of All Your Estate Tax Problems?
Issue: Vol. 49, No.7, July 2009
The answer to the above headline question is a thundering "YES" for about 99% of everyone reading these words. Why? Because it is almost certain that before 2009 ends, the tax law will be changed: to make the “unified credit” $3.5 million, or more, per person. That’s at least $7 million -- tax-free -- for a married couple... by Irving L. Blackman
Author: by Irving L. Blackman

Finding The Silver Lining
Issue: Vol. 49, No.6, June 2009
Three years ago, I wrote an article dealing with retirement planning in the aftermath of the dot-com collapse. Unfortunately, the two most common responses to huge financial losses are total withdrawal from the markets, based upon abject depression, or making abnormally high-risk investments in an effort to recover losses. Obviously, as we should have learned by now, neither of these approaches will be successful for long. Given the recent carnage on Wall Street, it’s probably time to revisit our plans for retirement... by Allan Z. Gilbert
Author: by Allan Gilbert

Technology Won’t Define The Industry’s Future … We Will
Issue: Vol. 49, No.6, June 2009
Here’s a radical idea. New technology is important, but it will not control the fate of the amusement trade. Instead, technology will simply offer all manufacturers, distributors and operators a chance to shape their own destinies ... for good or ill. This article looks at today’s most important technologies for amusements and music...by Kevin Williams
Author: by Kevin Williams

New Law, Strategies, Information To Make You Wealthy, Or Wealthier
Issue: Vol. 49, No.6, June 2009
Knowledge is power. The right kind of new knowledge, if you know what to do with it, is always an economic powerhouse for you and your business. This article is a continuation of my series of articles dealing with "How to make it, how to keep it" ... by Irving L. Blackman
Author: by Irving L. Blackman

Secrets Of A Successful Diversification Strategy
Issue: Vol. 49, No.5, May 2009
Despite centuries of folk wisdom that urged "Don't put all your eggs in one basket," one of America's most successful industrialists used to recommend the opposite approach. Andrew Carnegie claimed that diversification was actually a terrible idea. He said the secret of success was to "put all your eggs in one basket -- and watch that basket!" …by Frank Seninsky
Author: by Frank Seninsky

Vending Waits On Advance To Application-Based Technology
Issue: Vol. 49, No.5, May 2009
About a year ago I had a conversation with the CEO of Cantaloupe Systems, Mandeep Arora. We were talking about how technology has evolved. He told me something I will never forget -- that we were evolving from a world that revolved around machines to a world that revolves around applications, and the outcome will be a world that revolves around solutions... by Dave Levine
Author: by Dave Levine

Time For A Change
Issue: Vol. 49, No.4, April 2009
From my vantage point, it appears that our industry suffers from myopia -- not literal nearsightedness, but a lack of imagination, discernment and long-range perspective in thinking and planning...Dave Levine
Author: by Dave Levine

CUSTOMER RETENTION 101: Offering Added Value, Imaginative Services Can Increase Profit
Issue: Vol. 49, No.3, March 2009
In the October 2006 issue of Vending Times I wrote an article entitled "Customer Retention 101" that outlined a program for convincing your locations not to jump ship. Unfortunately, difficult economic times bring out the worst in our competitors. Therefore, this might be a good time to revisit the topic, and maybe to come up with some new approaches... by Allan Z. Gilbert
Author: by Allan Z. Gilbert

Videogames in 2009 Coin-Op Machines Are Poised For Big Comeback
Issue: Vol. 49, No.2, February 2009
Can coin-op videogames make a comeback? Many industry members have their doubts. Skeptics, including many operators, have dismissed the prospect of a return to dominance by video amusement as a major revenue generator, at least in traditional venues. But it's possible that today's dismissal of videogames is as mistaken as the industry's initial view, back in 1980, that saw the category as just a flash in the pan...Kevin Williams
Author: by Kevin Williams

THE NEW MATH FOR OPERATORS: Defining ‘Market Value’ In Today’s Industry Is Vital In Selling A Business
Issue: Vol. 48, No. 5, May 2008
Selling your vending business is much more complicated than selling your vehicle or your home, both financially and emotionally. This is your life’s work. Many operators who do not understand how to determine true market value go directly to their competitors to propose a sale – and they are inevitably disappointed in the offer, if they even get one. There are several facts operators need to be aware of to assess accurately a business’s value, particularly in today’s problematic economy …By MARC ROSSET
Author: by Marc Rosset, President, PVC Inc

VIEW POINT: Where Have All The Good Clients Gone?
Issue: Vol. 46, No. 5, May 2006
Out of dozens of vendors I’ve spoken with over the last 12 months, the majority tell me that their sales are up. But most of those admit that their net profit is either down or fluctuating somewhere around breakeven. But with most good businesses, if sales go up, profitability is sure to follow. What gives?  by Marc Rosset
Author: by Marc Rosset

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