Cantaloupe Report Highlights Surge in Cashless Payments and Micro Market Growth


MALVERN, PA — Cantaloupe, Inc. (Nasdaq: CTLP) unveiled its 2024 Micropayment Trends Report, which offers a comprehensive overview of consumer payment behaviors within the food & beverage vending and amusement/gaming sectors, along with insights into the burgeoning micro market kiosks niche. The findings underscore a significant consumer shift towards cashless and touchless transactions, revealing a broader trend in the convenience industry towards more technologically advanced and user-friendly payment methods.

According to the report, cashless transactions have become increasingly dominant, constituting an average of 69% of sales in food and beverage vending machines. This trend is even more pronounced in the micro markets segment, where a staggering 96% of transactions were cashless. The preference for contactless payments, representing 65% of these cashless transactions, points to a growing consumer demand for speed and safety in their purchasing experiences.

The study also uncovers a notable rise in spending within these sectors. Vending machine sales saw a 23% increase from the previous year, totaling more than $3 billion in 2023. Furthermore, micro markets—a relatively new phenomenon in the convenience industry—generated sales exceeding $750 million, attesting to their rapid growth and appeal among consumers.

Ravi Venkatesan, CEO of Cantaloupe, Inc., remarked on the significance of these findings, noting the robust growth in cashless and contactless payments as indicative of a flourishing self-service and convenience industry, particularly in the post-COVID recovery phase.

The report also sheds light on consumer spending behaviors across different segments. In amusement and gaming, while a majority of consumers still pay with cash, those opting for cashless methods spend substantially more—over seven times the amount spent by cash users, with average cashless ticket sizes at $6.13 compared to $0.81 for cash.

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For the first time, the Micropayment Trends Report included data from micro market kiosks, revealing a 36% increase in installation locations in 2023. This expansion reflects a broader industry trend, with more than 30,000 active micro market locations estimated in 2022, marking an 18% increase from the previous year. Notably, consumers spend 37% more at micro markets than at vending machines, highlighting the significant revenue potential these markets offer to operators.

The report’s insights are poised to revolutionize how self-service operators approach their business strategies, emphasizing the importance of adapting to cashless technologies and exploring the opportunities presented by micro markets. The shift towards digital payment solutions not only caters to consumer preferences but also opens up new avenues for growth in the convenience industry, signaling a promising future for operators willing to innovate and diversify their offerings.

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