How Tech Is Driving Micro Markets and Vending

Nov. 16, 2023
This Automatic Merchandiser/ live webinar on November 16 will look at how technology, from advanced equipment to cashless payment systems, is a key feature driving micro market growth.

Date: Thursday, November 16, 2023
Time: 3:00 PM EST / 2:00 PM CST / 12:00 PM PST / 8:00 PM GMT
Sponsor: CantaloupeGimme Vending, Nayax & 365 Retail Markets
Duration: 1 Hour

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Micro markets are red hot and more popular than ever. Technology is one of the key features driving micro market growth. Cashless payment systems, security systems, advanced equipment, promotional programs and improving back-end platforms are all helping to lower operator costs and improve operator performance.

While micro markets continue to shine, vending enjoyed a resurgence during the pandemic that has not let up. Again, it is all about technology, from advanced equipment that can sell a greater selection of products (hot food) to cashless payment systems, are contributing to the growth.

This webinar will offer a lively discussion that explores key issues and seeks to answer the following questions:

  • How can operators leverage technology to improve micro market sales?
  • How can operators leverage technology to improve vending sales?
  • What can technology do to lower operator costs?
  • Does technology facilitate easier and more effective promotions?
  • What can technology do to mitigate theft?
  • What should operators look for in a cashless payment system?
  • What advancements should we expect to see from micro markets and vending in 2024?
  • Can technology promote food safety?
  • What is important to consumers in a vending or micro market transaction?
  • How will AI impact the micro market and vending industry?
  • Has technology made it easier to acquire a company?
  • What should industry newcomers or operators who feel they need to step up their technology, be thinking about from a tech standpoint?
  • What is the best advice for all operators in 2024?

Be sure to join us. See you there!

Sponsor Speakers

Pete Carmain
Vice President of National Accounts
Nayax, NA
Pete is an industry leader and expert in unattended retail and payments. With over 25 years of experience in technology sales, Pete leads the national accounts team for Nayax, North America. Pete specializes in designing and implementing large scale solutions for large operators that combine payments, operations and logistics technologies that improve operators overall business performance through the Nayax suite of products and services.

Alex Buck
Regional Sales Director
Alex Buck is a seasoned professional with 15+ years in foodservice and vending. In 2019, he joined Cantaloupe, bringing with him 9 years of valuable expertise gained from his time at PepsiCo, where he worked on both the Pepsi Beverages and Frito Lay snacks sides. Alex received the 2021 Automatic Merchandiser Pros Who Know Award, and finds fulfillment in helping business operators find solutions that have positive impact on both their operations and personal lives.

Kurk Johnson
Vice President, 32M Sales
Kurk Johnson brings over 50 years of experience in the vending food service industry. He spent two decades as a vending operator, culminating in his role as President of Minnesota Valley Vending and Amusements. Additionally, Kurk worked for 20 years as a distributor. Nine years ago, he joined Three Square Markets, which was later acquired by Cantaloupe. Kurk's expertise and dedication were recognized when he received the 2016 Pros to Know award. In 2017, he was honored as the Employee of the Year at Three Square Markets. Kurk's is based out of Bloomington Minnesota, where he was born and raised. 

Evan Jarecki
Co-Founder & CEO
Evan Jarecki is the optimistic, outgoing, and curious startup Co-Founder & CEO of Gimme. As an awarded technology leader, he's made an impact in the food & beverage industry and Atlanta startup community. His customers in the vending and grocery space trust his industry knowledge and thought leadership. He also serves as the Board President with Startup Atlanta, a non-profit focused on connecting, curating, and promoting the Atlanta startup ecosystem. He’s an avid content, culture, and community guru, and a huge gamer outside of work.

Ryan McWhirter
VP of Product Strategy
365 Retail Markets
Ryan McWhirter serves as the Vice President of Product Strategy for 365 Retail Markets, based in Troy, MI. With a Telecommunications degree from Michigan State University, Ryan has 2 decades of expertise in unattended self-service technologies. His extensive background spans the implementation of self-order kiosks, digital menu displays, mobile applications, and more across sectors including convenience services, restaurants, airports, and casinos. This wide-ranging experience underscores his diverse proficiency in contemporary foodservice technology.

Operator Panelists

Chris Costenseno
Operations Manager
Take A Break Vending

Chris Cosentino has been in the industry since 1998, starting at Carneys Refreshments until 2002 when they were acquired by Take A Break Vending Services. He quickly rose from CSR to CSM, covering various areas in California. In 2008, when Take A Break Vending Services sold to First Class Vending, Chris became the operations manager, overseeing nearly all aspects of the business. Chris was an early adopter of technology in the industry and a longtime advocate of cashless payments, vending management software, and the introduction of micro markets. In his role managing operations, Chris is always on the lookout for new technology that he believes can improve his business. 

Benoit Herve
Founder and CEO
LBX Food Robotics

LBX Food Robotics founder and CEO Benoit Herve has over 25 years of experience in technology design, support, sales, marketing, and leadership. Mr Herve combined his extensive background in technology, robotics, and power management with his life-long love of French cuisine to design, develop, and market Bake Xpress. As the world's first multi-product micro-bakery, Bake Xpress leverages innovations in food robotics technology and revolutionized the vending industry.

Mr Herve holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from ESIEE Paris and a Masters in Electronics Automation from the Université de Rennes I. Prior to founding LBX, Mr Herve held a variety of technology roles including design, customer support, and executive leadership positions at AnDAPT, Altera, Enpirion, Powervation, Zilker Labs, and Motorola.

Arthur Siller
SVP of Operations
Evergreen Refreshments

Arthur Siller helps companies transform food at work and retain happy employees. Over the past ten years in the foodservice industry he has witnessed many trends come and go around food expectations at work, dietary trends and more. “My mission is to take a consultative approach with clients to tailor programs that are truly built around their needs and actually solve their problems.”He is SVP of Operations for Evergreen Refreshments, the largest provider of company refreshment solutions in the Pacific NW. Evergreen Refreshments services include office coffee/tea/water, vending machines, micro markets, pantry service, and full-line catering. Arthur has helped hundreds of companies improve and transform food at work, which includes operating 900 micro markets which feed thousands of people at work.

Steven H. Burch
President and CEO
Burch Food Services, Inc

Steven H. Burch is President and CEO of Burch Food Services, Inc. where he leads a second-generation family business that began in 1977. What began as a garage-based business with a handful of employees serving customers in a four-county area surrounding Sikeston, it has grown to 180 employees with multiple facilities and customers in four states.
Burch Food Services’ primary focus is serving food to the end consumer in manufacturing facilities by means of self-checkout markets, cafeterias, vending and office coffee service. Burch Food Services also operates a USDA inspected culinary center in Sikeston along with distribution centers in Paragould Ark., Newbern and Jackson, Tenn.
As the consumer has evolved so has Burch Food Services through constant efforts to improve consumer transactions. The company was an early adopter of unattended fresh market kiosk, which transitioned Burch Foods’ business from vending machines with limited variety to endless selections and improved customer satisfaction.



Molly Rogers
Managing Editor
Automatic Merchandiser

Moderator: Bob Tullio
Contributing Editor, Automatic Merchandiser/
Tullio B2B
Bob Tullio is a content specialist, speaker, sales trainer, consultant and contributing editor of Automatic Merchandiser/ He advises entrepreneurs on how to build a successful business from the ground up and specializes in helping suppliers connect with operators in the convenience services industry – coffee service, vending, micro markets and pantry service specifically. Subscribe to Automatic Merchandiser's new podcast, Vending & OCS Nation, hosted by Tullio and designed to make your business more profitable.For more information on the services that Tullio offers to operators and suppliers, visit or contact him at [email protected].


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