Thursday, February 22, 2018 | Today's Vending Industry News
Five Star Begins 25th Year With Strong Momentum

Posted On: 2/8/2018

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CHATTANOOGA, TN – Five Star Food Service said 2017 was a banner year on which it will build as it begins its 25th year in business. Highlights from 2017 include continued top and bottom line revenue growth which allowed for nine acquisitions, investments in technology, new service lines and charitable giving.

The Chattanooga, TN, company has completed nine acquisitions since last January. The focus of most was to bolster base business across all lines and bolster operational efficiencies and same-store sales growth. All acquisitions were considered "tuck-ins" inside Five Star's existing Canteen franchise service area.
 
Five Star purchased all or parts of: Southern Coffee Service (Chattanooga, TN); JBA/Manda Lee Vending (Sevierville, TN); River City Vending (Chattanooga, TN); Middle Georgia Vending (Macon, GA); Blue Ridge Spring Water (Chattanooga, TN); Old Fashion Foods (Rome, GA; Preferred Vending (Cherry Log, GA); and Blue Ridge Spring Water (Knoxville, TN); and an undisclosed operator in Knoxville, TN.

Early in the year, an acquisition allowed for an expansion of water service capabilities to include five-gallon jug spring water. The move completed the company's service portfolio as a one-stop-shop for workplace convenience services. Five Star offers its private labeled spring water in Chattanooga and is poised to launch in other regions.

Five Star said it experienced an unprecedented year in terms of growth (40%) in micromarkets in 2017, opening 250 markets in the past 12 months.
 
Given its expertise in the micromarket space, Five Star realized the opportunity to partner with hotels to help them more efficiently manage their lobby pantry markets. Via a partnership with Supply Wizards, Five Star launched an online ordering platform offering two-day delivery and inventory management for local hotel partners.

On the technology front in 2017, Five Star retrofitted over 9,000 vending machines with USA Technologies' ePort Interactive card readers. Five Star said the deployment allowed the company to actively engage the consumer at the point of purchase, resulting in a lift in promoted products, cashless and mobile wallet transactions.
 
Finally, in 2017 Five Star formed the Feeding the Future Inc. charity, which donated more than $30,000 to Chattanooga's local food bank and plans to make ongoing donations to fight childhood hunger across its service footprint funded by company profits and other fundraising initiatives.  

Founded in 1993 and based in Chattanooga, TN, Five Star provides micromarkets, vending, coffee services, full-service dining and catering across Tennessee, Georgia and Alabama. It has grown to one of the largest privately held operators in the United States and is a franchise of Canteen Vending.