If you’ve ever lined-up to get your name scrawled on a Starbucks’ coffee cup, chances are you’ve taken a moment to reflect on how this American concept of coffee has enveloped the globe. Scratch beneath the modern, corporate surface however, and something more traditional shines through. Wherever you’ve bought your Starbucks, it’s virtually certain that your coffee was delivered by Italian technology, and more specifically from a La Marzocco machine. This is no quirk of fate or lucky break for the espresso machine giant that was founded in Florence in 1927. La Marzocco was and is well known as a leading innovator in the industry, both in the machines it designs and the services it provides. From its earliest inception, La Marzocco has recognized that a service element was essential to maintaining good customer relations. After all, well-built machines are also built to last, and without offering enhanced services to accompany the sale, the partnership between the end-customer and manufacturer would more or less end when the box arrived in the store, leaving someone else to take up that lucrative services role.

La Marzocco has an industry leader in service contracts almost from its inception, but it was also an early sponsor and promoter of the ‘barista’ phenomenon. As the concept of coffee as a commodity was transformed into coffee as an experience by the appearance of branded cafes on our street corners in the early years of this century, so the barista entered our everyday lexicon as the ‘artist’ who mediated that experience.



Taking the next plunge, La Marzocco again realized that it would have to make some changes if it was to stay on top of what is now an extremely competitive and aggressive market. Building on its barista training, service contracts and ingenious machine design, La Marzocco turned to its sales model to see if it could enhance the existing system to achieve new steams of income and growth.

Relayr came on board and brought together stakeholders to create a phased plan that would move the company from a sales business model to a leasing or pay-per-usage model for their machines. This was innovation on many levels. There was almost no preexisting IoT technologies at the company’s manufacturing plant or built into its machines. The sensitive nature of the market meant that the project would have to be rolled out quickly and effectively.


Once agreement had been reached on the service model change, relayr’s engineers went in and singled out one machine type to act as the prototype for the future transformation. The machine was retrofitted and also lightly redesigned to host the compact IoT device. This device harvested data from the machine on its usage, condition and servicing needs. It also had Wi-Fi capabilities and a GPS locator, which meant that these machines could be located anywhere in the world and send their data and location to relayr’s middleware platform, working in AWS cloud environment. Here, the data could be processed and then visualized on relayr web-based dashboards at La Marzocco HQ. As part of this redesign, it was agreed that data on machine usage would be filtered through SAP in order to provide a billing system for the end-customers. The technology quickly proved its worth and La Marzocco agreed to begin rolling out the technology on a fleet of machines.


La Marzocco was now able to offer pay-per-usage and greatly enhanced maintenance services to its end customers. These end customers needed far less investment in the machines and experienced less unforeseen downtime. The end customers effectively became partners as their fortunes were now tied with that of their equipment supplier. The leasing and geo monitoring model also offered coffee store owns greater opportunity to franchise or regulate their own stores.

For La Marzocco, the benefits were huge. They achieved all of their business outcomes and more, without having to make substantial capital investments. Most of the machinery was already in place, it just took expert IIoT knowledge from relayr to enable and assist in the service transformation.


If you’re excited about how we can support your business in pivoting to
‘As-a-Service’ model just fill out the form and we’ll contact you shortly.

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