Swiss coffee machine manufacturer Franke Coffee Systems is focused on creating a memorable experience and puts this at the centre of its brand identity and product development.
There are plenty of great coffee machines on the market – however, Franke Coffee Systems Chief Marketing and Digital Innovation Officer Patrick Koller says quality alone is not enough to stand out in today’s marketplace.
“Consumers are far more confident about expressing what they want – premium, choice, and convenience – which puts more pressure on our customers, who must find ways to meet these demands,” Koller tells Global Coffee Report.
“To be successful in the long run, they need to be able to solve challenges, meet high standards of quality, and provide the best possible experience every single time.”
Franke Coffee Systems has put this line of thinking front and centre with its new brand identity, encapsulated with the concept line “it’s all about the moment”.
“It takes more than just a good coffee machine and beans to create a great customer experience. We want to enable our partners to create and co-create the most inspiring and rewarding coffee experiences,” Koller says.
“For us, it’s about consistency, reliability, and understanding the various challenges our customers face based on their individual consumption requirements. We see ourselves as a partner who understands our customers’ needs.”
To Franke, this entails providing services and benefits beyond the physical coffee machine. Koller says the company operates less like an equipment supplier and more like a coffee and customer experience solutions provider.
“To create that experience, it takes outstanding equipment, but also coffee competence, expertise, and the support of digital services to give our customers full control over their coffee operations,” Koller says. “No matter where they want to take their business next, or whether they serve 50 or 1000 customers per day, we provide solutions for them to create the most rewarding coffee experience.”
“It’s all about the moment” was launched at HostMilano in October 2019, along with Franke’s enhanced digital services offering and three new product developments.
“We went to long-term customers and partners early on in the journey to also understand what they expect from a partner like Franke,” Koller says. “That gave us good insight into what they expect and the confidence that our new brand identity and products will resonate well with them.”
Franke’s new fully automatic machine is the compact A300, measuring only 270 by 465 millimetres with a capacity of 80 cups per day. The expansion of Franke’s A-line series features an automatic descaling system, lowering the cost of ownership and maintenance, and a patented heating system, setting temperatures for different products and reducing energy consumption. The A300 will be available starting in mid-2020.
The A300 is configurable to fit multiple environments, such as the option of using an inbuilt water tank or direct connection to a water main. Koller says the unit serves as an entry point for new customers.
“The A300 offers premium coffee quality with a small footprint. Customers without much counterspace or experienced personnel – offices, bakeries, smaller venues, and hotel lobbies – will be able to offer the same experience as those using our larger A-line models,” he says.
“The office space in particular is a new target segment for us. Bringing that experience into a workplace environment drives employee satisfaction and productivity because people don’t have to leave the office anymore to grab a good cup of coffee.”
Another recent focus of Franke’s has been the North American and Asian markets, with the new Speciality Beverage Station SB1200 designed to capitalise on growing trends in these regions.
“The SB1200 was a development triggered in discussions with some of our key accounts in America and Asia. We were specifically asked how we could bring beverages like iced coffee, cold brew, and flavoured drinks into one concept that combines traditional coffee beverages as well,” Koller says.
“It was a cooperative approach to its development where we took their requirements to heart and developed a solution.”
Thanks to the patented Franke technology, cold brew beverages can be easily created without additional nitrogen equipment, both with or without crema and cascading. When combined with milk or syrup, Koller says this makes for a seemingly endless variety of beverages, which have a more appealing aroma and consistent quality thanks to the Franke’s iQFlow technology integrated as standard.
“The SB1200 allows our customers to create a real experience. It was literally designed to address emerging consumer trends towards more drink variety, choice, and convenience without compromising on beverage quality,” Koller says. “And it won’t just appeal to North America and Asia. When a trend emerges in the United States, it tends to pick up not long after in Europe too.”
Franke will be able to increase the variety offered by its current range of automatics – the A-line and semi-automatic S700 – thanks to an Iced Coffee Module also debuted at Host. With this optional addition, iced coffee is brewed from freshly ground beans and cooled immediately as required.
Koller says demand for variety is only one of the trends Franke is addressing with its new product and service line. He singles out payment and loyalty program integration as becoming more important for their retail customers, and Franke has incorporated this into its offering.
“For venues operating in a retail environment, they face challenges getting customers into their store and providing a great experience once they’re there. That goes from beverage quality to the end transaction,” Koller says.
“We make this possible through our open API architecture and enable our customers to incorporate existing loyalty programs into their machines or allow consumers to pay with a QR code at the machine without having to go to the cashier.”
This is only one benefit of the enhanced features of Franke’s Digital Services 2.0 telemetry system. Koller says the new platform is a move from one-way telemetry, taking information from a machine, to two-way, where data can be uploaded as well.
“Digital Services 2.0 takes fleet management to a whole new level. You can remotely manage your data, employ new software, drink menus, or promotional pictures, and see which machines require what intervention. If a machine requires restocking or cleaning, the Operations Manager receives an alert and can react instantly so the customer experience – or their bottom line – is not compromised,” he says.
“You can also monitor the performance of your machines and drive profits through real time commercial insights. One example would be seeing across your fleet of machines what drinks perform best and adjusting the drinks menu to highlight what’s popular.”
Koller says each of these product and service developments were developed with Franke Coffee System’s new brand identity in mind.
“All of these innovations will enable our customers to take their business further,” he says.
“It’s all about the moment when our customers can create that inspiring and rewarding coffee experience. We are there to help them along the way.”