There’s plenty of verbal jousting about the best style of American pizza: the New York big slice, Chicago deep dish, the scorched-crust pizzas out of New Haven, Connecticut. Add to that a new style: vending-machine pizza.
The Paline pizza ATM made its debut in August at Xavier University in Cincinnati. Now, the French-based company is looking to build a network of regional distributors in the US, per a call for applicants on its website. The company characterizes the ATMs in gushing terms, describing them as “the peak of our nation’s history.”
Paline supplies the machines, individual purveyors prepare their own pizzas (it offers five-days of cooking and machine maintenance courses for $6,000 through Xavier University) and keep them in the refrigerated ATMs. Customers pay for the food by card, and after about three minutes, the pie emerges—fully cooked and already boxed.
Each pizza machine costs $55,000 and holds 70 pies that sell for about $10 a piece. According to Paline, if a wiley pizza entrepreneur can sell more than 40 pizzas per day, that person could bring in around $90,000 each year.
The purported expansion indicates a belief by Paline—which has about 300 machines already operating across Europe and even has an Italian rival, Wonderpizza—that demand exists for hundreds if not thousands, of pizza ATMs, even as meal delivery services such as Seamless and GrubHub have increased competition beyond traditional companies as Pizza Hut and Domino’s.
Since the pizzas sold from the machines are not uniform or made in one location, it’s unclear how the machines comply with federal regulations requiring vendors to display for consumers nutrition information. For traditional vending machines, nutrition information must be present if the vendor owns or operates more than 20.