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Slovak firm offers self-service beer

A SLOVAK company called Mad Box, from Slovenská Ľupča in eastern Slovakia, has designed a patented automatic beer dispensing station where a customer can serve himself a nice brew after inserting the proper coins. After two and a half years of design, and a similar period distributing the machine in Slovakia and Germany, the company now has its sights set on broader markets, the Hospodárske Noviny financial daily reported last July.

A SLOVAK company called Mad Box, from Slovenská Ľupča in eastern Slovakia, has designed a patented automatic beer dispensing station where a customer can serve himself a nice brew after inserting the proper coins. After two and a half years of design, and a similar period distributing the machine in Slovakia and Germany, the company now has its sights set on broader markets, the Hospodárske Noviny financial daily reported last July.

“This is a unique device; thanks to our patents nobody else in the world other than us can manufacture it,” said Ivan Hangonyi, the company’s manager, as quoted by the daily, adding that in addition to strong interest in Slovakia and Germany, companies in other countries such as Italy, Japan, Dubai and Russia have shown interest.

Hangonyi added that since the beer dispensing station costs around €6,000 it makes sense to market it in countries where a large (0.5l) beer costs several euros.

The idea of designing a self-service beer dispenser came to Hangonyi while he and his colleagues were at a hotel in Spain where they saw customers drawing their own beer but still having to wait to pay a waiter or other hotel staff.

“We wanted to make something that would save even more in costs or reduce the burden on staff,” Hangonyi said in describing his company’s strategy.

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