Gold vending machine eyes 25-40% hike in UAE sales

German firm behind ATM to open three more machines in UAE by June, says CEO
Gold vending machine eyes 25-40% hike in UAE sales
The ATM, which is covered in 24-carat gold, dispenses one, five and 10 gram bars as well as one ounce bars of gold
By Claire Ferris-Lay
Sun 15 May 2011 01:23 PM

Ex
Oriente Lux, the firm behind the first gold vending machine, expects UAE
sales to rise 25-40 percent and is ramping up its expansion plans in the Gulf state,
its chief executive said.

The
German firm has six Gold To Go machines installed at some of the UAE’s most
luxurious hotels and plans to install up to fifteen before expanding across the
GCC, said Thomas Geissler.

“The
plan is to be very stable in the UAE and have 15 machines installed. Then we
will stop when we think the market is covered, before going further to the
other territories of the Middle East,” he told Arabian Business.

“[We
have] six now, in June we will have nine and then we are waiting to have good
locations to roll out remaining up to fifteen,” he added.

The firm
is in talks to open three more machines, two in Abu Dhabi and one in Dubai, by
June and expects to see as much of a 40 percent increase in sales when
equipment is installed that allows customers to pay using a credit or debit
card.

Gold
prices reached an all time high April 29, topping $1,531.79 per ounce. On Friday
the precious metal had fallen 4.5 percent from its peak over concerns about the
global economy.

Gold To
Go customers, who are typically tourists and UAE nationals, have remained unfazed
by soaring gold prices, said Geissler.

“The
vending machine is nearly neutral [to gold price]. The biggest task in the
UAE…. is to open the credit card facility because people can only buy with
cash,” he said. “We expect to increase the sales rapidly when we can accept the
credit cards [in June] by 25-40 percent.”

The ATM,
which is covered in 24-carat gold, dispenses one, five and 10 gram bars as well
as one ounce bars of gold. It also tracks the gold price on fluctuating markets
with an inbuilt website that transmits the information every 10 seconds, and
updates the price every 10 minutes.

Ex
Oriente Lux has produced 60 machines, 20 of which are currently operational.
In September the firm said it planned to more than triple the number of devices
in operation around the world. 

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