Our Product Pick
Zebra's ET4x Series Tablets
Aldelo, L.P. (Pleasanton, CA), developer of the Aldelo Express Cloud POS for Restaurants, has placed its Aldelo Express for Android on the Google Play Store. It enables merchants of Aldelo Express to select from a variety of name-brand tablets priced under $500. Such Android (as well as iPad) tablets can be purchased outright or via two- and three-year payment plans (with no interest). In concert with approved merchant services, Aldelo Express is provided at no charge.
"Expanding Aldelo Express POS Android offerings is another example of Aldelo's commitment to offer merchants proven, readily available, and affordable hardware options for comprising a POS solution that meets their operational needs," relayed Jeff Moore, VP of Operations with Aldelo, L.P. "Aldelo is listening and responding to the market's demand for non-proprietary POS hardware choices that meet the needs of an evolving restaurant industry with new demands for delivering great dining experiences." An accompanying module, Aldelo Masa+, provides restaurant businesses with its web-based storefront for Mobile Online Ordering, Secure Digital Wallet, and Gift, Loyalty, and Rewards.
In addition to restaurants, Aldelo Express for Android (as well as iPad) addresses environments such as food trucks, food courts, pop-ups, stadiums, and other remote locations, notes Aldelo, L.P. All Aldelo POS devices print orders directly to the kitchen and bar, supporting up to 20 individual printers or Kitchen Display Systems (KDS). Also supported are mobile credit card payments on- and off-premises (as well as back-up).
Aldelo Express for Android Tablets
A new entity, entitled Bluu, has been formed from United POS Solutions (aka "UP Solution") and its affiliated company, United Merchant Services (aka "UMSI"). Sited in Hackensack, NJ, Bluu will seek to leverage its synergistic prowess in payment processing and POS. It plans to introduce new hardware (both credit card terminals and POS), expanded software (in particular, Software-as-a-Service, SaaS), and intelligent business and financial services (e.g., data analytics).
UP Solution, founded in 2008, and its network of resellers as well as direct sales force, has an established presence in multiple vertical markets such as restaurants, retail, personal care, and dry cleaners. UMSI, recently ranked as the 48th merchant acquirer by the Nilson Report, has been in business for nearly three decades. Under this re-branding, it has an exclusive marketing license with new entity, Bluu.
"We are very excited about reinventing the companies and refocusing on a common goal of becoming an essential business partner to our merchant clients. We would like to express our deepest appreciation to our merchant clients and business partners for supporting us through the years," remarked Jay Yoon, President and CEO of Bluu. "We foresee putting our merchant clients in control over their operations, data, and profit margins. Bluu will help to empower merchants to operate their businesses more efficiently, reduce expenses of managing inventory and employees, and analyze and track performance of their business."
UP Solution and United Merchant Services Re-Brand as One Entity: Bluu
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A Scamper for Squirrel
Squirrel Systems (Vancouver, BC, Canada) has extended its Squirrel Cloud POS with its Full-Service Restaurant Edition. Utilizing Microsoft Azure, and the experience of Squirrel Systems in table-service, it fulfills capabilities such as transfers across servers, tables, and departments, sharing of items, and split payments. Also, coursing options allow the meal to be automatically or manually placed, and it accommodates environments across table-side, bar, counter, curb-side, or via delivery.
Its Cloud Full-Service Edition was based on feedback from independent restaurants participating in the Squirrel Cloud Early Access Program in 2021 and 2022, as well as collaboration with longtime enterprise customers such as Wolfgang Puck, according to Squirrel Systems. As third-party software providers, Squirrel worked with Restaurant365 (restaurant management; Irvine, CA), SevenRooms (guest experience and retention; New York, NY), Tacit Maegan (mobile POS; Toronto, ON, Canada), and Eigen xDine (online ordering and payment; Vancouver, BC, Canada). An ecosystem of Squirrel Cloud also includes additional payment processors Shift4 (Allentown, PA) and Elavon (Atlanta, GA).
"Only 10 months after releasing the first publicly available version of the Squirrel Cloud POS, Squirrel's Product and R&D teams have been able to deliver the functionality required to run discerning full-service restaurants," declared Jason Leeson, President of Squirrel Systems. "This is the pace of innovation that a true, modern cloud-based point-of-sale platform delivers to our customers." Established in 1984, and one of the pioneering purveyors of touchscreen POS, Squirrel Systems is part of private-equity Marin Investments (Vancouver, BC, Canada).
Squirrel Systems Launches Full-Service Restaurant Edition of Squirrel Cloud POS
TSC Plays Tag
TSC Printronix Auto ID (Brea, CA) has unwrapped its first direct-thermal mobile printer with RFID, designated Alpha-40L. In dimensions of 6.3"/160 mm (W) x 7.5"/191 mm (L) x 3.1"/79 mm (D), weighing 2.3 lbs./1 kg, Alpha-40L has maximum print width of 4.1"/104 mm, with print speed of 5"/127 mm per second at resolution of 203 dpi. In addition to receipts, documents, and barcodes at ID/2D, it produces certified Rain UHF RFID.
It comes with automatic calibration for RFID, seven menu buttons, easy-to-use navigation, and 2.3" color LCD (320x240). As expected, it supports Windows, Windows Mobile (WinCE), Android, and iOS (with Software Development Kits, SDKs). As for connectivity, there's two versions offered: Type-C USB 2.0+MFi Bluetooth 5.0+Passive NFC Tag and Type-C USB 2.0+802.11 Wi-Fi/Bluetooth 4.2+Passive NFC Tag.
In ruggedness, Alpha-40L has an IP-54 rating for moisture and dust, environmental rating to MIL-STD-810G, and 6 ft./1.8 m drop resistance (8.2 ft./2.5 m with optional case). A rechargeable 6200-mAh Li-Ion battery features "smart" technology and pairs with TSC Console or Connect IoT by SOTI (Mississauga, ON, Canada). A standard two-year warranty is provided by TSC Printronix Auto ID for all of its printers.
TSC's Alpha-40L RFID Mobile Printer
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EVO's "Sage" Advice
With an eye on integrated payments for the business-to-business segment (B2B), EVO Payments (Atlanta, GA) has snapped up North49 Business Solutions (Burnaby, BC, Canada). As both an Authorized Partner and Development Partner for Sage ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning), North49 provides accounts receivables solutions and business automation tools to allow customers to streamline their payment workflow via certified integrations to Sage 300 and Sage Intacct. Further, North49's customer portal is an endorsed solution for Sage 300 and Sage Intacct. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
"We are exhilarated about the acquisition of North49, which will enable us to offer our leading gateway and acquiring services to Sage users and offer a bundled B2B payments solution to customers new to both Sage and EVO," shared Brendan Tansill, President of Americas at EVO. "North49's leading Sage integration enhances our existing B2B payment offering, which also includes native API (Application Programming Interface) integrations to the Microsoft, Acumatica, Oracle, and SAP systems (for ERP)." A division of EVO Payments, via acquisition, Nodus Technologies developed EVO's cloud-based PayFabric Gateway for B2B.
"I am delighted to see our vision for North49 continue under EVO's ownership," expressed Rob Eichhorn, Co-Founder and CEO of North49 (named for its geographic latitude). "EVO is committed to further expanding our relationship with Sage and developing our leading suite of Sage-integrated e-commerce solutions. We look forward to working with our new colleagues at EVO and to expanding the distribution of our proprietary technology across our collective partner network."
Customer Portal for B2B Payment Player North49, Now Part of EVO
Co-Pilots: Videojet and Loftware
A new partnership has been forged by Videojet Technologies (Chicago, IL) and Loftware (Portsmouth, NH). It focuses on extending Loftware's Spectrum Enterprise (in Version 4.6)--in support of deployed thermal printers in production lines, factories, and warehouses--from labeling into areas of marking and coding. As such, it will enable customers to drive all of their printing devices from an all-in-one digital solution spanning manufacturing and supply chain, according to the two parties.
"Looking for innovative ways to improve our customers' operational efficiency and reduce production errors is what Videojet does every day for thousands of customers across the globe," proclaimed Ondrej Kruk, President of Videojet. "All companies can benefit from the deep industry expertise and collaboration of the Videojet and Loftware teams. Combining Videojet's superior performance and range of marketing and coding technologies with Loftware's Spectrum will offer companies an important step-change in their digital automation journey." (FYI: Hardware not limited to devices from Videojet.)
"Loftware pioneered the enterprise labeling space as demand increased for a standardized platform for labeling across an organization's global operations," indicated Robert O'Connor, Jr., President and CEO of Loftware. "In recent years, that same trend extended to marking and coding where companies are thirsting for a single software solution to replace the use and management of disparate and propriety software applications required for different device makes and models. We are excited to partner with a leader in the space like Videojet and to extend the robust capabilities of Loftware Spectrum so that both existing and new customers can benefit from our full range of output capabilities."
A New Partnership for Labeling, Marking, and Coding Between Videojet and Loftware
Orduo (Raleigh, NC) has marketed its white-label restaurant online ordering system for reselling by VARs and ISOs. A set of tools supports easy launch and any customization. It allows resellers to set their own fees, and to have full control of the customer, according to Orduo. For resellers interested in focusing solely on selling, Orduo will handle all of the restaurant support under the reseller's own brand. In addition to the online ordering service, the program includes an enhanced mobile app for order handling, no-charge restaurant website builder, and integration into third-party solutions in business management and POS. Also, it ties to most merchant processing gateways. "Orduo is the perfect addition for those looking to diversify their service offerings to restaurants," asserted Scott Arkin, CEO of Orduo. "The technology opens doors and increases revenue for the reseller across the board. This program marries the exciting growth of online ordering with the solutions that our partners are already providing."
White-Label Online Ordering From Orduo
Follow the Money
-SpotOn (San Francisco, CA): $300 million in Series F funding led by Dragoneer Investment Group (San Francisco, CA) to expand its omnichannel software and payments technology for restaurants and retail. It comes eight months after SpotOn's Series E, and raises SpotOn's valuation to $3.6 billion.
-Mashgin (Palo Alto, CA): $62.6 million in Series B funding led by New Enterprise Associates (Chevy Chase, MD) to further its touchless self-checkout system. Existing investor Matrix Partners also participated in the Series B. A new unicorn, Mashgin now has valuation of $1.5 billion.
Self-Checkout System by Mashgin
Factor4 x Two
A pair of new partners in payments for gift card and loyalty provider Factor4 (Broomall, PA), in the form of Talus Pay (Dallas, TX) and Charge Anywhere (South Plainfield, NJ). With its RewardOS API (Application Programming Interface), Factor4 supports in-store, online, and mobile functionality. It currently has 16,000 customers for its technology.
"Our partnership enables Talus Pay to provide their customers with the industry's best omnichannel gift card solution," suggested Dan Battista, CEO at Factor4. "Our gift card solution increases revenue, attracts new customers, and reduces attrition. We will provide Talus Pay's customers with all the support they need to successfully sell gift cards. Both of our companies share the principle of putting customers first."
Of Charge Anywhere, continued Battista, "We have had overwhelming demand for it and have already begun boarding merchants. We are happy to provide merchants with the ability to process gift card transactions on these high quality, affordably priced terminals as consumers return to in-store shopping." As products, Charge Anywhere has its QuickSale Payment Suite and ComsGate Payment Gateway.
Factor4 Gift Card Solution Adds Two Partners in Payments
With This Ring (Jewel360)
An all-in-one cloud-based retail software for the jewelry industry has been designed by Jewel360 (Springville, UT). As full functionality, it carries real-time visibility and control over in-store and online sales, inventory, customer communications, and marketing. Also, for jewelry, it supports repairs, custom work, special orders, and lay-away plans.
In addition, it includes integration with one of the industry's leading clienteling solutions, Clientbook (Lehi, UT). A mobile app, for use by store owners, managers, and associates, as appropriate, Clientbook helps the retailer increase store visits, sales conversion rates, and average dollar sales, according to the two parties. It also facilitates relationship building by keeping track of the customer's buying history.
"We're thrilled to bring Jewel360 to the industry and to support jewelry retailers with a truly modern solution unlike any other," contributed Nick Gurney, GM of Jewel360. "We've combined decades of jewelry expertise with industry-leading technology to design an all-in-one solution to help retailers streamline operations and increase sales. To date, customers that have switched to Jewel360 have increased sales by 20% or more." It was debuted at the JCK Show for Luxury Jewelry.
Designing Jewelry Sales With Jewel360 Software
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POS & Peripherals
Stands, Mounts, Cradles
Touchscreens & Monitors
Zenoti Makes the Cut
A leader in the beauty salon segment, the Regis Corporation has embraced the technology platform of Zenoti (Bellevue, WA). It will deploy the software in more than 5,000 locations controlled by the Regis Corporation--Supercuts, SmartStyle, Cost Cutters, Roosters, and First Choice Haircutters--accounting for more than three million guests every month. Also, Zenoti will purchase the Opensalon Pro software of the Regis Corporation (which is based in Minneapolis, MN).
"We have always had the goals of providing our franchisees and customers the best possible experience, improving our operations, and driving business growth through enhanced data and direct marketing capabilities," espoused Matthew Doctor, President and CEO of Regis Corporation. "After engaging with and evaluating the Zenoti system, it became clear that this platform in the best choice. The scale and diversity of business models they support for salons is unmatched."
Zenoti furnishes end-to-end functionality in its vertical, including online appointment bookings, inventory management, Customer Relationship Management (CRM), and POS. In particular, it addresses one of the segment's biggest challenges: employee management and retention. "Our technology empowers businesses to better satisfy and connect with service providers and staff," explained Sudheer Koneru, Co-Founder and CEO of Zenoti. "First, by positioning service providers to earn more money via added services, tips, retail upsell, and more. Second, our business intelligence and automation enable business owners to free up staff from time-consuming administrative work."
Regis Corporation Adopts Zenoti Software for Its Thousands of Beauty Salons
Paytronix Cooks Up Bao Bucks
Wow Bao, the fast-casual Asian restaurant concept, has rolled out its rewards program, Bao Bucks, powered by Paytronix (Newton, MA), for its network of virtual kitchens. A subsidiary of the restaurant group, Lettuce Entertain You, and started in 2003, Wow Bao currently has more than 600 virtual kitchens. Its new effort, Bao Bucks, represents the first virtual kitchen rewards program, according to the two parties.
In concert with delivery by DoorDash, Bao Bucks enables members to earn one point for every dollar spent on food and beverages ordered exclusively through the website of Wow Bao. For every 100 points, guests receive $7 in Bao Bucks. "Not only is this cheaper for the guest, but it also enables Wow Bao to learn more about their customers," testified Andrew Robbins, CEO of Paytronix.
"As the leader in the virtual dining segment, we continue to innovate and evolve for our restaurant partners and our guests," expounded Geoff Alexander, President and CEO of Wow Bao. "Thanks to Paytronix, Wow Bao is the first virtual brand to offer loyalty on a national scale. Together, we will enhance the guest experience, increase our volume of repeat orders, and drive more sales to our partners." Also, Paytronix has powered the loyalty program for fast-casual Mexican restaurant chain, Illegal Pete's, with ten sites in CO and two sites in AZ. Called "V.I. Pete's," the program includes mobile app as well as physical cards.
A National Loyalty Program for the Virtual Kitchens of Wow Bao
Paying With P2P
A Surge for PayPal, Etc.
-82% of micro-merchants and the wider SMB accept at least one digital Peer-to-Peer (P2P) payment option at their business.
-92% of such micro-merchants and the wider SMB are happy with their experiences with P2P.
-On average, 59% of total payments for such micro-merchants and the wider SMB are accounted for by P2P.
-44% of such micro-merchants and the wider SMB chose to leave a balance in their business accounts for P2P, rather than transferring those funds into a bank account.
-Merchants cited the following reasons for accepting P2P: ease-of-use, including speed and convenience; desire to offer consumers wider choice of payment methods; wanting to appeal to younger consumers' preferences; and, feeling their businesses were too small to invest in additional payment processing capabilities.
-"The future of P2P payments looks bright, especially among newer establishments and gig workers," said Jared Drieling, Senior Director of Market Intelligence and Insights at The Strawhecker Group.
"Survey of Small Businesses in U.S." conducted by the Electronic Transactions Association (Washington, DC) and The Strawhecker Group (Omaha, NE).
82% of the SMB Accept Peer-to-Peer Payments
Chowly (Chicago, IL), which integrates third-party delivery services and the restaurant's POS, has enlisted Kristin Peterson as its SVP of Marketing. She brings experience as Group Director/Team Lead Brand Management at The Richards Group, working with Corona Beer, Red Lobster, and Ruth's Chris. Most recently, she served as Chief Marketing Officer for Dickey's Barbecue Pit, one of the clients of Chowly.
"I've always enjoyed this industry and love the emotional connections people can have when sharing a meal, so I'm happy to be a part of a growing team who recognizes the importance of redefining the restaurant space by digitizing the ordering process," mused Peterson. "The restaurant industry can be notoriously slow to adopt new technology, but we've undergone years' worth of innovation since Covid-19. Chowly presents a compelling solution to a very real, present-day problem, and we want restaurants to focus on [serving] their food and patrons, while efficiently running their business."
"Chowly is at an inflection point in its journey to change the hospitality space, and Kristin is here to tell the story of how we've become a foundational problem solver for some of the biggest challenges that restaurants face," commented Sterling Douglass, Co-Founder and CEO of Chowly. "Kristin's understanding and firsthand experience at leading tech-forward restaurant brands showcases her familiarity with the industry's most inherent struggles. She is joining a team committed to breaking down the technological barriers in our space and acting as an unapologetic advocate for restaurants, both big and small."
Kristin Peterson, SVP of Marketing, Chowly
Growing Your Own
POSaBIT (Kirkland, WA), which provides payment processing for the cannabis industry, has engaged Julie Solomon as its Chief Revenue Officer (CRO). She previously served as CRO for another fintech, Synctera. Earlier experience includes SVP and Head of North American Sales at Envestnet and Senior Business Development Manager, then Director of Technology Initiatives, Alliances, and Channels, at Oracle.
"As CRO, Julie will lead the efforts of our sales, marketing, and customer support teams," stated Ryan Hamlin, Co-Founder and CEO at POSaBIT. "Consolidating these customer-facing teams under Julie's leadership enables a more unified approach to the market and will help us to better leverage our success to further expand our business. Her extensive experience leading go-to-market teams for fintech organizations will be invaluable as we pursue new markets, add more retail partners, and tap into growth opportunities within our existing base of retailers."
"POSaBIT is a rapidly growing company in an exciting and evolving industry," enthused Solomon. "It is an ideal time to join an incredible team, and I look forward to helping the company expand its footprint throughout North America and further accelerate its growth." In its Q1 2022, reported revenue for POSaBIT increased 79% to $6.4 million.
Julie Solomon, Chief Revenue Officer, POSaBIT
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