Ice Business Banner

Benefits of Ice and Water Vending

Since the mid-2000’s the ice vending industry has been growing steadily and aggressively, however it is nowhere near its peak. The ice and water vending business is unlike any other business opportunity. Below are many of the benefits of owning an ice and water vending machine business.  Click on each benefit category to learn more.

High Profit Margins – Typically bags of ice sell for around $2.00 per 10lbs. The actual cost of the bag for the owner is something closer to $0.20. That is a 10x markup and a gross profit margin of  90%. Typical retail products hover around 30%-50% gross profit margin.

Quick Return on Cash – This is a cash businesses so as soon as you set up a vending machine, you have the potential for cash.  With other businesses, you have to invest a significant amount of money and time in order to promote and market the businesses. Sadly, more often than not, that money goes to waste and the company goes out of business. The most important question is, “when do I start making money?” With an ice and water vending business, sales will happen on day one.

High Ability to Scale – With other businesses, it is harder to scale because the start up process takes months, if not years, and the amount of capital required is high. In the ice and water vending business, the start up time is very low and so is the capital required to start. This makes scaling your business very simple. The only thing to do is to find a good location.

Low Capital Requirements – The ice and water vending business allows a business owner to get into business for the cost of the machine plus the cost to maintain and operate the machine. Compare this to the cost of opening a brick and mortar franchise or a foodservice business. Not only do you have to buy equipment, but you also need to purchase furniture, hire and train employees, and pay for all the maintenance costs for each of those line items as well as many others (office supplies, workers comp, raw materials and inventory, etc.). The ice and water vending business requires one piece of equipment to purchase and maintain – that’s it!

Eco-Friendly – Just think about the journey your bagged ice makes from the ice plant to your glass or cooler. It is distributed by a machine, then bagged, loaded onto a truck, handled by a delivery person, rearranged by convenience-store clerks and handled by customers. Energy consumption, trucks on the road causing traffic and plastic bag consumption will all be reduced by using Everest VX models. We estimate that using the Everest VX machines&nbsp;<strong>reduce the carbon footprint of the current central ice factory model by at least 85%.&nbsp;</strong>Furthermore, our bulk dispensing feature encourages customers to conveniently use their coolers and water jugs, saving plastic and the environment.

Low Human Capital Requirements – Any vending business can operate without employees or personnel to complete a sales transaction. These businesses are a big lure because they can literally operate 24 hours a day and 365 days a year as long as the machines are working properly. Imagine paying an employee $10 per hour for 24 hours for an entire year. You want to know how much that is? $87,600. This business only requires someone to collect the money and refill the bags that people use. How long does that take? Not long at all.

Low Space Requirements – Compared to other businesses, the ice and water vending business does not require physical office space or inventory space, just a minimal amount of retail space. The small of retail space needed is a giant benefit because oftentimes, the ice and water vending machines are placed in unused, non-revenue generating space that can be turned into pure profit (outside of a grocery store or convenience store).

No Inventory Requirements – Non-service businesses need product to sell which means that they have to keep inventory on the shelves. This requires a lot of upfront purchase capital. Furthermore, what if the products expire or are no longer relevant? Lost product. The only inventory that is required with this business are parts associated with the maintenance of the machine.

Low Operational Maintenance Required – This goes along with the previous benefits of “no inventory requirements” and “low human capital requirements”. The operational costs are also low. For the ice and water vending business, the cost to maintain a machine include electricity, water/sewage, filters, machine spare parts, and bags for the ice. Think about the operating cost for some other businesses, most often the largest cost is labor and the cost of goods sold (inventory).

Can Be Managed Remotely – This business is one that can be done from home or can be done as a side business. With a remote management system, a business owner can review the sales and operational standing of any machine despite the number of machines he or she owns or the geographic locale.

Low Reliance on Vendors, Partners, or Distributors – In the ice and water vending business, you essentially own your own factory. You do not have dealers or distributors that you need to work with. You do not have to rely on someone bringing product to you or product being delivered late. The operational process becomes very simple when what you make gets to the end customer in the same transaction. In addition to that, money is only exchanged once; from your customer’s hand to your bank account.

People are Health Conscious About What They Eat And Drink – Never before have people in the United States been more concerned about what they eat and drink. What people put into their bodies has a direct effect on their health.  This health-consciousness is a great thing for the ice and water vending industry because the water and ice coming out of a machine is made fresh without any human hands involved in its making – eliminating the risk of contamination. 

Advancements in Technology – The ice vending business is an industry that has grown from technological advancements. These advancements allow the industry to eat up the market share of older, antiquated distribution systems. For decades ice has been sold in ice chests at retail locations. These ice chests are filled on a daily basis by a regional distributor of ice who gets their ice from a large factory.  This is a very expensive way of getting ice to customers due to the high human capital requirement to fulfill this system. Ultimately, this cost is passed onto the customer. Imagine if there was no distribution system. Imagine if you were the ice factory selling directly to customers. Where would those savings (also known as profit) go?

The Everest VX Series Gives Business Owners A Step Up

The Everest VX Series are the industry’s most operationally efficient machines. Through a patented ice dispensing design, the VX Series eliminate maintenance requirements and machine failure points. Less machine downtime leads to more profits. Learn more by clicking the button below.

Finding Ice Business Opportunties

Want to know where to start? Everest can help you identify the questions you need to ask yourself in order to get moving in the right direction. First off, what type of ice vending opportunity are you looking into? If you aren’t sure, click on the button below to find out.