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Northern Ireland’s Barista Bar completes digital overhaul

The self-serve coffee machine business is seeking to improve customer experience with a new digital loyalty app, updated website and e-commerce store

The My Barista Bar Rewards+ app | Photo credit: Barista Bar


Northern Irish self-serve coffee machine business Barista Bar has unveiled a new digital loyalty app, website and e-commerce store to better align with growing consumer demand for digital transactions.

Established by Henderson Foodservice in 2015, Barista Bar has more than 600 self-serve coffee machines across the UK, primarily in SPAR, EUROSPAR and ViVO convenience stores across Northern Ireland. Henderson Foodservice has invested £250,000 ($316,000) in the digital overhaul. 

The brand’s Coffee Rewards loyalty app enables customers to collect stamps alongside their purchases, with every tenth stamp resulting in a free beverage. Customers receive two stamps per purchase when using a reusable cup. 

“Barista Bar and the way we communicate with our customers has evolved over the years, led by their behaviour and preferences. This digital approach not only modernises the brand’s presence but will enhance the overall user experience while reinvigorating our loyalty and rewards programme, improving customer engagement and satisfaction,” said Brand Manager Keavy O’Mahony-Truesdale. 

Henderson Foodservice has invested over £14m ($17.7m) in the Barista Bar brand over the last nine years and sold 12 million hot beverages in 2023. 

In October 2023, Barista Bar signed a £2.5m ($3m) distribution deal with CJ Lang & Son to roll-out its self-serve coffee machines at more than 100 SPAR stores and an unspecified number of its independent retailers in Scotland. When completed, the roll-out will bring Barista Bar’s total UK footprint to 730 units.   

Barista Bar is the four largest premium vending operator in the UK, behind Costa Express, Absolute Coffee and We Proudly Serve Starbucks.  

World Coffee Portal research shows the total UK consumer-facing premium vending and self-serve coffee market grew by more than 2,000 units (11%) in the 12 months to September 2023 to reach to exceed 20,770. Market leader Costa Express makes up nearly two thirds of the total consumer facing premium vending and self-serve coffee market, with more than 13,200 units. 

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