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Generation Next Acquires Robot Technology

Reis & Irvy's robot kiosk. Image from Robofusion website

San Diego-based Generation Next Franchise Brands (OTC:VEND), parent company of new vending machine chain Reis and Irvy's as well as Fresh Healthy Vending LLC, announced this morning that it has acquired certain intellectual property assets of Robufusion, a developer of interactive robotic kiosks. The deal is valued over $3 million.

The franchisor of 310 franchises agreed to pay Robufusion a cash payment of $420,000, a $2-million note that matures in 3 years and 1,520,000 five-year warrants with a strike price of $.50 per share. Some of Robofusion's officers, directors and shareholders will be subject to a five-year non-compete agreement.

Generation Next now owns several patents and pending patents.

The franchisor aims to use the robotic technology with existing and future frozen desert vending brands. For its robots with Reis & Irvy's frozen yogurt, a customized double-barrel, soft-serve unit located inside the robot delivers the soft-serve product at a uniform temperature and consistency. It cleans itself after each serve. The user interface and software has telemetry software, which allows the machines to electronically distribute multiple daily reports to franchisees – providing product temperature, consumable levels and daily, weekly and monthly financial sales performance reports.

Installed with proximity sensors, the robotic arm senses when customers are nearby and begins waving and lighting to attract the passersby's attention.

The franchisor is only currently in the U.S., Canada and the Bahamas, but it says it has contracted with third-party manufacturers, distributers, installers, trainers and a service networks to support buyers in over 140 countries around the world.

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Don Sniegowski is editor of Blue MauMau, the daily news journal for franchise & small business owners. Call him at +1 (270) 321-1268, tweet @bluemaumau or email