Coffee shops are a great place for friends to hang out and even get some work from the office done. They also make up a $30 billion industry and a company in Texas is trying to capitalize on that with a unique spin on the typical coffee spot.
Students at the University of Texas, in Austin, are some of the first to experience The Coffee Haus. These automated kiosks from the startup Briggo take up just 50-square-feet of space and claim to brew the best cup of coffee.
“We are a coffee company. We’re not a machine company, so we’re absolutely dedicated as a company to create great coffee for customers,” said Briggo’s president and chief executive officer Kevin Nater. “We’re actually just giving it to you in the ultimate coffee experience relative to the way coffee’s been done up to this point.”
The prototype allows customers to customize their coffees, lattes, espressos, Americanos, and cappuccinos. Experts source and roast their signature beans and the kiosk is stocked with fresh dairy, gourmet syrups and sweeteners. A robot makes what the company says is the perfect cup.
“The one thing missing in this system is the barista,” said Nater. “The one thing that is here is consistency around automation.”
Briggo is hoping to take a bite out of the $80 billion worldwide coffee industry that includes heavyweights like Starbucks, Dunkin Donuts, The Coffee Bean and Peet’s. Recently the largest growth has come from machine made single serve pods.
For example, in just five years, sales of Green Mountain’s K-Cups have exploded from $50 million to $5 billion and Nestle’s Nespresso brings in $3.5 billion.
Peter Crippen owns REX, just across Tenth Avenue from the CBS Broadcast Center in New York City. Crippen’s baristas are trained professionals and at the shop, a market priced pour over coffee, or a latte is considered a work of art.
He told “CBS This Morning” contributor Lee Woodruff that the coffee is better when a barista’s human hand touches it.
“The barista is constantly changing how they’re making the coffee, because temperature changes, that affects your grind,” he said. “So they’re constantly changing what they’re doing to make it perfect.”
However, at Briggo, it’s even more scientific. Computers analyze moisture and temperature as well as allow you to order your cup right from your phone.
Nater told Woodruff that they are not asking people to stop frequenting coffee shops, but are planning to use their kiosk to fill a void.
“The coffee shop is a beautiful experience. We’re not asking people to stop going to coffee shops. We’re basically planning to put this in locations that aren’t necessarily suitable for a coffee shop,” he said. “Customers want access to barista quality coffee, but 24 hours a day.”
Briggo plans to open a second kiosk at Austin-Bergstrom international, and is looking to brew up business in more cities