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Le Bread Xpress Partners with Macy's for its First Public Robot Micro-Bakery Installation
The Bake Xpress machine can now do pastas, sandwiches and other dishes.
Le Bread Xpress announced today that it has partnered with Macy’s to launch a custom branded version of the Bake Xpress robotic micro-bakery. This is the first such branded partnership for Le Bread Xpress in the U.S. and the first Bake Xpress installation that is available to the general public.
The Macy’s Bake Xpress is open now and located at the Macy’s Westfield Valley Fair shopping center in Santa Clara California. The Macy’s Bake Xpress will feature a menu that includes a rotating selection of pastries, pizza, sandwiches and calzones that are stored refrigerated in the machine and heated upon order.
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Le Bread Xpress currently has 45 Bake Xpresses intalled around the U.S., though they are all at universities and corporate campuses and thereby not fully accessible to the general public.
Benoit Herve, Founder and CEO of Le Bread Xpress told me in an interview last week that Macy’s wants to use its new Bake Xpress machine to provide not only pastries for customers, but offer food for different meals throughout the day.
Herve also said that the Bake Xpress has new, expanded heating capabilities. In addition to pastries and pizzas, Bake Xpress can now also serve pasta dishes. Herve said that this flexibility has attracted a lot of interest from corporate catering companies. “We can replace most of the dishes that would be served,” Herve said.
Next year is shaping up to be a big year for robotic food vending machines. The Blendid/Jamba (smoothies) relationship looks fruitful so far as the two launched a second kiosk. Piestro launched a joint venture with 800 Degrees Pizza to create co-branded pizza vending kiosks. And Yo-Kai’s first self-driving ramen vending machine, was scheduled to arrive here in the U.S. this month.
There are a lot of reasons we’ll see more vending machines in public spaces. New technology allows for more complex, higher-end meals to be created. The small footprint allows restaurant operators to extend their brand without the cost of building out a full store. And thanks to various COVID waves, people will remain contactless food retail will remain a priority for the foreseeable future.
With its small size and increased flexibility, the Le Bread Xpress’ micro-bakery could see some macro gains in the coming months.