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Grabox creates Australia first in-car ride share vending machine

The mini-vending machine in ride share cars including Uber, OLA and Taxify. Courtesy: Flavio Brancaleone/Herald Sun

Exclusive: Mini-vending machines are about to hit the streets in cars.

Australian-based start-up company, Grabox, is working with drivers from ride share companies like Uber, OLA, Taxify, DiDi and GoCatch to roll out the first in-car snack bar filled with sweets, health bars, savoury snacks and other essentials.

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The machines are being installed in more than 300 cars in NSW, Victoria, Queensland, South Australia, Western Australia and the ACT, with more than a 1000 drivers expressing interest in just a month.

Drivers will also sell a selection of chilled, non-alcoholic drinks from an esky.

Grabox co-founder and Chief Operations Officer, Dhruv Kohli, told News Corp drivers are selected based on their passenger rating and must work more than 30 hours a week.

They receive a percentage of every item sold and the machine is expected to generate between $100-$200 more for drivers monthly.

“We only take drivers with a 4.7 rating as a minimum and if their rating slips they lose it,” he said.

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The mini-vending machine in ride share cars including Uber, OLA and Taxify. Picture: Flavio Brancaleone
“The box and everything in it is free, there are no refill costs either and the box is securely installed and locked to avoid theft.”

He said they regularly review prices which are “competitive”.

“We are trying to compete against Coles, Woolies and convenience stores, but on busy nights like Fridays and Saturdays prices will go up so the driver makes more money,” he said.

“Passengers can select an item by scanning their smartphone over a QR code and pay in seconds.”

Isabela Francini, 23, and Cristina Casanovi, 25, from Sydney, said it would give them more options while they’re on-the-go.

“It’s a good way to share something with your friends, I could definitely buy something on weekends when I use Uber or OLA,” Ms Casanovi said.

Cristina Casanovi and Isabela Francini trialing the mini-vending machine in a ride share car. Picture: Flavio Brancaleone

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“It’s easy and fast when you’re hungry when you don’t have time and you’re coming home from work,” Mrs Francini added.

A recent IBISWorld report into ride sharing services in Australia found industry revenue is projected to rise annually at 13.7 per cent over the next five years through 2023-24, to reach $543.2 million.

Ride Share Drivers Association of Australia President Rosalina Kariotakis told News Corp she was impressed with the delivery and presentation of the machine after trialing it for a week.

“The drivers are all curious about it and passengers are entertained by it,” she said.

Cristina Casanovi said she would definitely take up the option of buying a snack from the vending machine.

But she said full-time drivers would get the most benefit out of it, as they’d earn more money.

“It’s great to be supporting an Australian company doing this when we don’t have a local ride share service yet,” she said.

“There could also be options for drivers to pick the selection of food and drinks in the esky bag, that might work better.”

Mr Kohli said they were constantly taking feedback from drivers and passengers to improve their selection of items for sale.


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Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison alongside wife Jenny celebrates the win of the NSW Liberal Party at the NSW Liberal Election reception at the Sofitel Sydney Wentworth, in Sydney, Saturday, 23 March 2019. NSW Coalition government led by Gladys Berejiklian has been returned to power for a third term in NSW following Saturday’s election.

Tony Abbott MP Member for Warringah & Zali Steggall Independent candidate for Warringah pictured talking today at the Leadership Summit in PWC Barangaroo One International Towers Friday March 8 2019.

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