In an interaction with Restaurant India, Ashish Nimodia, Founder at Snackit talks about the idea of starting the snack vending machine.
After completing his management degree, Ashish got selected to join a corporate banking company through the campus placement and went on to join the company like many others to become successful with hopes of climbing the corporate ladder. After spending close to six years in finance industry when he took the risk and decided to leave his job and venture out on his own. Hailing from the corporate ecosystem and being associated with the Corporate finance division in the company wherein life moved around deadlines, research, conference calls, managing client’s expectation, e-mails, co-workers asking questions. The next thing one realises at around 4pm is that they haven’t eaten lunch yet! This was an everyday problem for almost everyone in the office and this is when Ashish thought of coming up with a solution to this the problem. Here are the excerpts from the interview:
What is the whole idea coming up with Snackit?
All of us probably have such manic days at times. The cafeteria is closed, some tuck shops probably selling unhealthy food options and a long queue, as it is already a tea-time. This for me was becoming part of the routine more often, when I realized that snacking not only has to be quick, but at the same time a healthy one. That is when I thought and came up with a conclusion, that in order to save time of an employee and at the same time for them to remain productive, quick access to healthy snacking options are needed. This is how I came to think of setting up Snackit, a vending machine like no other.
How much money you have invested in the brand?
The total amount of money invented till now is 20 Million.
Your average daily transaction is 4,000. Who are these customers?
We are presently associated with 50 plus corporate with some top-notch clientele like top most Global E-Commerce Companies, Banks, Hotels, Call centres, IT and education sector etc. We have also expanded our services geographically and successfully catering our services to other metropolitan cities like Mumbai, Chennai and Hyderabad. Our next target is to spread our business in Delhi /NCR in the near future.
How does the vending machine work? Have you tied up with someone or you do it yourself?
We procure the machine from US / European Companies and customize it as per the requirement of the customer and take it forward.
Is there any fee that you charge from partners?
We charge a monthly rental between Rs.12, 000 to 18,000.
What are the different kind of beverages and snack options you give?
We offer delightful servings, all day, and every day snacks and beverages. Established in October, 2015, Snackit aims at providing 24/7 service, which means that you can expect to have a continuous flow of packaged branded foods and drinks- not only through the day, but also during the night! Our main focus is to ensure that the energy levels are quite high all the time at the workplace, and this can be achieved by ensuring that the nutritional needs of your employees is satiated with our snacks & beverage vending machines that are not just smart but also focus on providing healthy options. Some of the products are Berry /Nuts Energy Bars ,Sun Dried Fruits Munching’s , Oats different flavoured Soups ,Various millets snacks ,Seed Crunch, Organic Foods, ,Jalapeno, Peanuts, Dark Chocolate, Ragi Cookies, Fresh Smoothies and Coconut Water to name a few.
What is the average value per person via this machine?
The average expenditure on a monthly basis is Rs 1000 – Rs 1500 per machine
How are you introducing the healthy content via Snackit?
We believe healthy food shouldn’t be bland and boring! It the absolute fundamental need for creating a healthier and happier workforce. And that is what we are here to do, bring composite state-of-the-art snack and beverage vending services in the comfort of your work space.
How are you marketing the brand?
While our presence on social media platforms acts as an integral part of our branding and marketing exercise; we also have benefitted from other mediums such as recommendations and word of the mouth from our existing customers. At Snackit, our firm belief is on building not just partnerships with our customers, but also relationships through employee engagement initiatives. We run multiple competitions and employee engagement programs for our clients all-round the year – ‘Selfie with Snackit’ Diwali bonanza, Secret Santa contests to name a few in the recent past. Such initiatives not only help the employees feel more relaxed and rejuvenated at the workplace, but it also helps us in having a deeper sense of commitment towards the end users of our service
How do you see the vending machine trend catching up in India as it is already a hit in foreign countries?
Vending machine market in India is still at a nascent stage as compared to foreign countries, and is expected to witness dynamic growth in the near future. The market will be boosted by the increasing consumerism coupled with changing lifestyle, resulting in increased demand for vending machines. In today’s fast paced lifestyle, quick access and availability of consumer’s requirements has become an essential need. Hence any format of Vending Machine is helping consumer’s faster access to their requirements. We are even trying to implement more cashless technology for better customer experience
Going forward, can we see some more options being added to the machine?
The future of vending lies in tailored on-demand services. Our vision is not only to remain focussed in snacks and vending machine but also move to other segments of vending such as vending IT assets, FMCG and medicines once we make our spaces in ready food industry.
We are also looking forward to go cashless in the near future. We are already using Paytm for payments and now focussing on app based technology for payments. The idea is to promote the digital system, this will also help us in effectively manage our cash inflow and outflow.