Vengo: What Happened After Shark Tank?

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Are you curious about what happened to Vengo after their appearance on Shark Tank? This innovative vending machine company made quite the impression on the show, but did they live up to the hype? 

In this article, I'll dive into Vengo's pre and post-Shark Tank journey, exploring how they've grown their business, expanded their product line, and attracted major investors.

Get ready to learn about the exciting developments that have propelled Vengo to success in the years since its Shark Tank debut!

Vengo in a nutshell

  • Business concept: Touch screen mini vending machine
  • Founders: Brian Shimmerlik and Steven Bofil
  • Net worth: $50 million
  • Location: New York
  • Website: https://vengolabs.com/ 
  • Competitors: Arcade, Bigblue, MDMedia, TestingTime, Trader Media East, Youmi

A closer look into Vengo

Advancements in touchscreen technology have transformed vending machines into a more convenient way of purchasing items beyond sweets and soda.

A closer look into Vengo

Over the years, improvements such as adding touchscreen capabilities have transformed vending machines into indispensable features incorporated into everyday living. 

One company at the forefront of this revolution is Vengo.

Vengo is a Bethpage, New York-based company that specializes in making touchscreen vending machines for a variety of uses and clients. 

Founded six years ago, Vengo has quickly become a leader in the vending machine industry, with a growing network of over 27,000 screens across various venues. 

How Vengo machines work

The company makes wall-mounted mini vending machines, which are about the size of large picture frames. 

To buy these machines from Vengo and receive access to this software, vending machine distributors must agree to pay an additional monthly charge. Their partners and clients can either advertise or sell on the video screen of Vengo machines.

There will then be an additional monthly fee which will be based on the products per machine.

Instead of using traditional buttons or a coin slot, Vengo machines enable customers to use the touchscreen to browse through a selection of products and make their purchases. Hence, providing a remarkable digital vending experience.

The machines can sell up to six items at a time, with a focus on electronics, personal care products, and snacks. Vengo machines can be found in a variety of locations, including college campuses, health clubs, and hotels.

Equipped with smart technology that includes displaying advertisements and promotions along with tracking inventory levels, monitoring sales data & providing real-time feedback.

This makes Vengo Machines a perfect fit for people involved in advertising. 

In addition to keeping track of inventory levels, recording sales data, and giving operators real-time updates, the display feature also makes these vending machines alluring for marketers.

The technology behind Vengo machines

Vengo's vending machines are more than just a pretty exterior - they boast some impressive technology as well. Each machine is equipped with a high-definition touchscreen display that allows for interactive product browsing and purchasing. 

Behind the scenes, the machines are powered by proprietary software that allows for real-time inventory monitoring and restocking notifications.

This technology ensures that machines are always stocked with fresh products and minimizes downtime for maintenance. 

Additionally, Vengo's machines accept a variety of payment methods, including credit, debit, mobile payments, and campus cards, making them accessible to a wide range of users. 

The technology behind Vengo machines

Technology-focused strategic planning has allowed the enterprise to create a streamlined vending experience for all users.

Vengo's scale, proprietary software, and sales team make it possible to offer media buyers and agencies access to 27,000+ screens across various venues, with opportunities to reach various audience segments.

What Vengo offers

Looking for an innovative and efficient solution to vending? Look no further than Vengo, the cutting-edge vending machine company that offers a range of benefits for both customers and owners

From its experienced programmatic sales team to its sleek and customizable exteriors, Vengo is changing the vending machine game.

  • Expertise: With a team that has built its own media network, Vengo has a deep understanding of the digital-out-of-home screen industry.
  • Scale and flexibility: Customers have access to a large number of screens across various venues, including the largest DOOH network in the country of hard-to-reach college students.
  • Incremental revenue: Vengo offers ongoing management for screen owners, helping them optimize their profit and ensuring continued promotion to keep sales flowing.
  • Innovative solution: Vengo's sleek, modern, and eye-catching machines offer a unique and innovative solution to traditional vending machines.
  • Streamlined process: Vengo's focus on technology and innovation has allowed it to streamline the buying and selling process for out-of-home screens, providing customers with a better overall experience.

Vengo Shark Tank: before

The story of Vengo is one that is sure to inspire anyone who has ever had an idea that seemed impossible to execute. 

The company was founded by Brian Shimmerlik and Steven Bofill, two young entrepreneurs who came up with the concept of a vending machine that could be placed anywhere, providing snacks and other products on the go.

The origins of Vengo lie within Brian's frustrating ride in a taxi, during which he realized that there were no vending machines anywhere close where he could get some food. 

One instance sprung forth the concept behind Vengo: designing and distributing tiny merchandisers capable of dispensing countless different goods.

Brian and Steven partnered with a design team to turn their vision into a reality, and the result was a vending machine that was only inches thick and occupied two feet of wall space. 

This was a major breakthrough in the vending machine industry, as it allowed businesses to place vending machines in areas where they previously could not.

The Vengo vending machine was an immediate success, winning first place in the NY Business Plan Competition. Using the prize money, Brian and Steven officially launched the company in 2012, initially under the name Taxi Treats.

However, they later rebranded to Vengo, which is a much better name for their product.

The Vengo vending machine is now a revolutionary hi-tech vending machine of the future, capable of holding up to six different products depending on the location and a total capacity of up to 200 items

Vengo's sleek and compact design makes it perfect for smaller spaces, such as dorm rooms or hotel lobbies, where traditional vending machines may not fit.

Plus, its interactive screen and cashless payment options make transactions quick and easy for users.

Vengo Shark Tank: during

Appearing on Shark Tank can be a make-or-break moment for any entrepreneur, and for Brian Shimmerlik and Steven Bofill of Vengo, it was a critical opportunity. 

Vengo Shark Tank: during

In 2016, they stepped onto the stage in front of the Sharks, seeking a $2 million investment in exchange for 12.5% of their company.

The Sharks were impressed by their product, but as the entrepreneurs delved further into their business details, they became hesitant. Kevin O'Leary, known for his no-nonsense approach, asked if the company was in debt.

To the Sharks' relief, Brian and Steven revealed that they were not.

Despite this, Mr. Wonderful wasn't entirely sold on the deal. He proposed a three-year, $2 million loan at 7% interest in exchange for 6% of the company. The entrepreneurs then turned to Lori Greiner, seeking a potential partnership. 

After some negotiation, Lori and Kevin agreed to the same loan agreement, but this time for 3% equity.

Although the deal was not exactly what the entrepreneurs had hoped for, they recognized the value of having two high-profile investors on board. With the additional funds, Vengo could expand its business and reach more customers.

Vengo Shark Tank: after

In 2016, the founders appeared on the hit TV show Shark Tank, hoping to secure an investment that would help take their business to the next level.

Unfortunately, despite receiving multiple offers from the Sharks, a deal was never finalized. But Vengo didn't let that setback stop them. 

In fact, their appearance on the show actually helped to boost their profile and attract other investors.

One of the most significant partnerships that Vengo secured after Shark Tank was with Blackstone Launchpad. Blackstone Launchpad's collaboration aided the company in expanding its impact and increasing name recognition.

In addition, they received support from the Hyatt Hotel, which helped to fund their expansion plans.

Despite not securing investment from the Sharks, Vengo still managed to raise an impressive $7 million in funding from a range of investors, including Gary Vaynerchuk. 

This allowed the company to continue growing and placing their machines in more locations across the US.

As of 2021, Vengo has over 1,500 machines placed in various locations throughout New York, including colleges, residential buildings, gyms, and public transportation. 

They have also expanded to other cities across the US, and their revenue has reached an impressive $10 million to $12 million per year.

And as of 2023, the net worth of Vengo is approximately $50 million.

Final thoughts

Vengo is a company that has managed to make a name for itself in the vending machine industry thanks to its innovative approach to the traditional model. 

Vengo's success can be attributed to its ability to offer a unique and convenient experience for customers.

With their interactive screens and smart technology, they have revolutionized the vending machine industry and created a new standard for what a vending machine can be.

Despite facing challenges early on, Vengo has managed to thrive and establish itself as a leader in the vending machine industry. 

Their story serves as an inspiration to entrepreneurs everywhere, proving that with hard work, innovation, and determination, anything is possible.

Frequently asked questions

What is Vengo?

Vengo is a company that offers a unique vending machine experience. Their machines have interactive screens and smart capabilities that allow customers to purchase items in a whole new way.

Vengo's goal is to revolutionize the vending machine industry by offering a more convenient and engaging experience for customers.

How do Vengo machines work?

Vengo machines work by providing customers with a digital vending experience. Instead of using traditional buttons or a coin slot, customers use the touchscreen to browse through a selection of products and make their purchases.

How do Vengo machines work

The machines are equipped with smart technology that allows them to track inventory levels, monitor sales data, and provide real-time feedback to the operator.

Vengo machines also have the capability to display advertisements and promotional content, making them an attractive option for advertisers and brands.

What are some potential applications of the interactive screen?

Vengo’s primary focus has been on creating a hybrid digital signage and media platform tailored to campuses, hotels, and other dynamic locations. 

When you approach a Vengo machine, you can expect to encounter an array of engaging content, including videos, surveys, animations, social media amplifications, and much more.

Plus, they are continually innovating and experimenting with providing users with the most engaging and enjoyable experience possible. 

How many products fit inside such a slim machine?

The slim Vengo machine can fit anywhere from 40-80 products depending on the product mix, with the sweet spot being the size of an iPhone 5 or smaller. 

Despite its size, the average price point of close to $10 per item makes it a big sales hit, thanks to the team of former aerospace engineers who designed the vertical vending machine to maximize space.

Where do Vengo machines work best?

Vengo machines work best in high-traffic areas such as colleges, gyms, and hotels. The company has analyzed and experimented with different locations within these verticals to ensure the machines are placed in the most beneficial locations.

Does Vengo take cash?

No, Vengo does not accept cash. The machines only accept credit, debit, NFC/mobile, and campus cards like Blackboard and CBORD. This helps to minimize vandalism, make restocking safer, and prevent the machine from eating anyone's coins. 

All activity and refunds can be viewed and addressed remotely.

Are Vengo machines customizable?

Vengo has an in-house graphic designer who will collaborate with your brand or location to create a customized and visually appealing exterior for your Vengo machine. 

Our team takes pride in the appearance of our machines, and we will work to ensure that your Vengo stands out or blends in, depending on your specific goals for the space.

What is needed to install a Vengo?

Installing a Vengo machine is relatively easy, similar to installing a television, thanks to the company's custom mounting plate system.

The machines can be mounted on various surfaces like drywall, wood, cement, brick, and marble. For locations where wall mounting is not possible, Vengo offers custom-built stands.

What are the benefits of Vengo machines?

One of the key benefits of Vengo machines is their compact size. They are designed to be easily mounted on various surfaces, making them an ideal option for high-traffic areas such as college campuses, gyms, and hotels.

Overall, Vengo machines offer a unique and convenient experience for customers while also providing a valuable marketing platform for advertisers and brands.

What happened to Vengo after Shark Tank?

After appearing on Shark Tank, Vengo managed to secure partnerships and funding that helped it continue to grow and expand. The company now has over 1,500 machines placed in various locations, generating impressive revenue and valuation numbers.

About the author 

Peter Keszegh

Most people write this part in the third person but I won't. You're at the right place if you want to start or grow your online business. When I'm not busy scaling up my own or other people' businesses, you'll find me trying out new things and discovering new places. Connect with me on Facebook, just let me know how I can help.

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