USA Technologies Buys Cantaloupe Systems; Operators Cite Benefits, Note Concerns

USA Technologies buys CantaloupeUSA Technologies Inc.’s planned acquisition of Cantaloupe Systems Inc. for $85 million marks the creation of one of the nation’s most powerful vending technology companies, merging the capabilities of two well established vending technology providers.

Vending operators interviewed by Vending Technology News generally agreed that the companies’ collective technologies could deliver better consumer experiences and allow for decreased operational costs, benefits that USA Technologies cited in announcing the purchase agreement.

Stephen Herbert, chairman and CEOI of USA Technologies, told Vending Technology News the two companies would officially become one and that the company will work to streamline its customers’ experiences and find greater efficiencies through the combined team.

Some operators hope that manufacturing efficiencies borne of the acquisition will result in more favorable pricing of Cantaloupe’s cashless products. Some, however, are concerned about how new ownership could impact Cantaloupe’s customer service.

“I think it’s a great move for two companies to come together,” said Steve Marx, CEO of Royal Vending in Maple Grove, Minn., a longtime technology leader and a Cantaloupe customer. “I think it’s going to be good.”
Marx said consolidation has occurred in every other sector of the vending industry, such as operators and vending equipment manufacturers, so it’s only natural it will occur in the technology sector.

“I don’t know how much it’s going to change for us as customers,” said Jodi Glimpse, co-owner of Camelback Vending Services, a 7-route vending operation in Phoenix, Ariz., a 12-year Cantaloupe customer. “I’m happy for the principals.”

One longtime customer of both USAT and Cantaloupe who spoke off the record said he has mixed emotions about the acquisition. He is happy for the companies’ principals, and is hoping that the Cantaloupe cashless products become less expensive as a result of the acquisition. At the same time, he is concerned that Cantaloupe’s customer service could be compromised.

USAT stated on its website that enhancements to its services will give customers “the ability to engage with consumers in the moment at the point of sale, with product-specific promotions or recommendations, as well as help provide better experiences between brands and consumers.”

USAT further noted that the Cantaloupe product line has powerful synergies with USAT’s ePort Connect Platform. Cantaloupe’s Seed Cloud provides cloud and mobile solutions for dynamic route scheduling, automated pre-kitting, responsive merchandising, inventory management, warehouse and accounting management.

Anant Agrawal, Cantaloupe Systems co-founder, president and CRO, and Mandeep Arora, co-founder and CEO, will join USA Technologies and play major roles in the future of the combined companies, Herbert said.

The companies’ sales teams have already begun to collaborate on how to best help customers leverage the benefits of both product lines, he added.

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