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Franke’s recipe for wonderful

From the October 2017 issue.

Franke Coffee Systems has built a collection of semi- and superautomatics to ensure the premium coffee shop experience is available to everyone.

Franke

With the tagline “Make it Wonderful”, it’s only appropriate that commercial automatic coffee machine producer Franke Coffee Systems has been focusing on making its A-Series of superautomatics even more wonderful during the past 12 months.

At this year’s Host Milano, Franke debuted the A400, a superautomatic suited for outlets that may only serve up to 100 cups a day. The model completes the A-Series, which ranges from the A200’s capacity of 50 cups or fewer all the way up to the A1000’s capacity of 250 cups or more. Depending on an outlet’s needs, Franke has a model for the high end, the low end, and everything in between.

“We’re democratising the premium coffee shop experience by making it available to literally everyone,” says Franke Coffee Systems’ Chief Marketing and Digital Innovation Officer, Patrick Koller. “[In line] with the growing trend toward premium, milk-based coffee on the go, we’ve expanded the experience so coffee drinkers aren’t limited to premium coffee shops. They don’t have to leave their environments to find premium coffee.”

He uses a traditional office environment as an example: “If you work in an office, you don’t actually have to leave the office to have that premium coffee experience.”

Though Franke has a variety of customers, from offices and convenience stores to hotels and coffee shops, most of its business comes from the high-volume environments. Says Koller, “historically we have a strong heritage in the environments with high consumption”, but over the years – the past year in particular – the company has expanded its collection to serve customers at every place on the spectrum.

The A400 finally completes the set. Koller says the A400 is best suited for lower-volume outlets, such as convenience stores, hotel lobbies or offices, that may require the drink varieties the A200 lacks. “The A400 is bridging the gap between lower volume and greater drink variety,” he tells Global Coffee Report. “With the A400, we can now bring the sophisticated coffee experience to more consumers.”

The A200 is best suited for smaller outlets that don’t require as much customisation. The steamed milk and flavour shot components are optional. In the middle of the spectrum is the A600, which is recommended for outlets with daily output of 100 to 150 cups.

Although the A600 isn’t new, Franke debuted two advanced versions earlier this year: the A600 FM EC and A600 FM CM. Similar in look and operation, these new models are equipped with foam and cleaning capabilities that the original A600 didn’t have. Where Franke’s FoamMaster system was an add-on for the original A600, it’s fully integrated into the new models. The innovative system allows the user to create a variety of hot or cold milk foam consistencies depending on preference.

Franke offers two options for cleaning in its newest A600: the EasyClean system, where cleaning fluid is added manually, or the CleanMaster, which has a built-in cleaning cartridge.

The A1000, which Franke debuted at Host 2016, is obviously the company’s superautomatic heavyweight, yet the core unit is not much larger than the other models. True to the nature of most automatics, Franke’s systems are compact and incorporate all the components needed to make a high-quality espresso. Most of its smaller systems have bolt-on complementary products in addition to the FoamMaster, such as a milk cooler, flavour station and cup warmer, that would ultimately make the complete system much larger in size.

Naturally, Franke’s biggest top-of-the-line superautomatic comes with all the bells and whistles. The A1000 has an intelligent refrigeration unit for up to two types of milk that supply the integrated FoamMaster, an automatic dosing station for up to six flavours and the fully automatic CleanMaster system.

Regardless of capacity, all Franke’s superautomatics come with an intuitive touchscreen display that buyers can customise for their specific outlets. They’re also all internet capable, giving operators access to real-time user data, sales figures and more. Even Franke customers with multiple high-volume outlet, and thus a network of decentralised machines, can oversee their entire coffee business in real time.

Says Koller: “We want to help our customers create a seamless consumer experience in all their outlets while having a seamless operating experience behind the scenes.”

Similar to its series of fully automatics, Franke produces a line of semiautomatics. As such, it debuted a brand new semiautomatic at this year’s Host: the S700, which was specially developed for select roasters and coffee shop chains in the US.

“It combines state-of-the-art fully automatic coffee processing technology with the manual, high-performance frothing capabilities that a barista might want,” Koller tells GCR. “It’s perfect for the environment where you want to take advantage of an automatic machine but also want to froth the milk. We’ve basically taken the same elegant look and feel of our A series but adopted manual milk frothing technology.”

Koller admits that a semiautomatic – or even a traditional espresso machine – is only suited for particular environments and baristas, which is why Franke has such a robust superautomatic collection.

“We’re not trying to compete with traditional machines or say coffee from superautomatics is better than coffee from a barista using a traditional machine,” he says. “For us, it’s more to help coffee shop owners deliver the same in-cup quality time and time again when they’re up against challenges like staff turnover or varying quality across current baristas.”

Another customer challenge Franke is responding to is the regular adjustments a machine’s grinder requires.

“We’re introducing a breakthrough innovation in brewing technology – we call it Espresso 2.0,” Koller shares. “In a nutshell, Espresso 2.0 automatically adjusts the grinder for every drink every time. Now the barista can focus on the consumer experience instead of the grinder. It also produces better flavour extractions and elevates the taste profile to further contribute to the consumer’s experience.”

The Espresso 2.0 flow-control technology is available on select A models and standard in all new S models.

At the end of the day, it’s the consumer experience that remains at the core of the Franke Coffee Systems business. “A perfect cup of coffee can make almost any moment more wonderful,” touts the company website. But in order to serve the perfect cup of coffee for that experience, outlets need the perfect machine. Fortunately, Franke’s “wonderful product range features the perfect coffee machine to suit any requirements”.

Says Koller, “we’re constantly striving to elevate the consumer experience with unrivalled drink quality and customisation. We want to bring the premium coffee shop experience to every environment, but with complete flexibility to tailor to the consumer’s needs.” GCR

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