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SmartVend Wins Best Digital Campaign/Project at Tees Tech Awards 2023

On June 1st, the prestigious Tees Tech Awards 2023 unfolded amidst the stunning backdrop of the Kirkleatham Walled Garden. Among the outstanding businesses and industry leaders in attendance, Vianet emerged victorious, clinching the coveted Best Digital Campaign/Project Award for their groundbreaking innovation, SmartVend. A total of 10 enthusiastic members from Vianet, spanning different departments and seniority levels, were present to represent the company at this grand black-tie affair. This remarkable achievement further solidifies Vianet’s position as a leading force in the technology sector across the Teesside region.

The Tees Tech Awards

The Tees Tech Awards are an annual celebration of technological innovation and excellence in the Tees Valley region. The event brings together businesses from various sectors, ranging from cutting-edge startups to established industry giants. This prestigious event aims to recognise and reward the remarkable achievements of businesses that have demonstrated exceptional prowess in the field of technology.


Vianet’s Best Digital Campaign/Project Award

Vianet, renowned for its transformative digital solutions, was honoured with the highly acclaimed Best Digital Campaign/Project Award for its ingenious creation, SmartVend. This groundbreaking project leverages state-of-the-art technology to optimise vending machine operations, enabling businesses to streamline their processes, increase efficiency, and enhance customer experiences. The recognition of Vianet’s efforts at the Tees Tech Awards highlights its dedication to delivering innovative and impactful solutions that revolutionise the industry.


The SmartVend Revolution

SmartVend, the brainchild of Vianet’s talented team, represents a game-changing solution in the vending industry. By incorporating cutting-edge IoT technology and data analytics, SmartVend empowers businesses to gather real-time insights, improve stock management, and personalise the customer experience. This innovative platform not only enhances operational efficiency but also facilitates data-driven decision-making, enabling businesses to make informed choices that drive growth and profitability.


Vianet’s Representation at the Event

The Tees Tech Awards were not only an opportunity to celebrate Vianet’s success but also to acknowledge the collective efforts of the entire team. Ten individuals from various departments and levels of seniority within Vianet attended the event, exuding the company’s commitment to inclusivity and recognising the contributions of its diverse workforce. These representatives all worked closely on the project, showcasing the collaborative spirit and passion that underpins Vianet’s pursuit of technological excellence.


Black Tie Extravaganza

The grandeur of the Tees Tech Awards was further accentuated by the black-tie dress code, adding an air of elegance and sophistication to the event. Attendees embraced this formal attire, exuding both style and professionalism. The black-tie dress code set the tone for an evening filled with excitement, networking opportunities, and celebrations of technological achievements.

Onward and Upwards

Vianet’s resounding success at the Tees Tech Awards, winning the Best Digital Campaign/Project Award for SmartVend, is a testament to their unwavering dedication to innovation and excellence. This prestigious recognition solidifies Vianet’s position as a frontrunner in the technology sector, inspiring further advancements in the industry. With their transformative solutions and commitment to pushing boundaries, Vianet continues to pave the way for a future where technology plays a crucial role in optimising business operations and enhancing customer experiences.



SmartContact Pro Wins Vendies Awards 2023

Vianet made its way to London on Wednesday, May 31st, 2023, for the prestigious Vendies Awards. This year’s Vending Industry Awards were hosted by Vending International at the esteemed Grand Connaught Rooms in Holborn, Central London. The event brought together a diverse range of suppliers and operators from across the UK’s vending industry.

For the second consecutive year, Vianet was honoured with the coveted title of ‘Best Payment System.’ This achievement is particularly significant for Vianet as their SmartContact Pro, a newly introduced product last year, has successfully defended its position and retained the award following a year of remarkable success.

Mark Parry, Commercial Director of Vianet, expressed his immense pride at the company’s achievement, stating, “As the Commercial Director of Vianet, I am incredibly proud to announce that we have once again received the prestigious Best Payment System award at this year’s Vendies Awards for our exceptional product, Smart Contact Pro. This recognition underscores our unwavering commitment to innovation and excellence in delivering cutting-edge payment solutions to our valued clients. It is a testament to our talented team’s hard work and dedication, who consistently strive to provide the highest level of service and technological advancements. This accolade reaffirms our position as an industry leader and motivates us to continue pushing boundaries and revolutionizing the payment processing landscape. We are thrilled to be recognized for our achievements and remain committed to surpassing expectations, creating seamless and secure payment experiences for unattended retail businesses and related markets.”


Vianet’s End-to-End Solution

Vianet’s contactless payment, telemetry, and data services seamlessly integrate to provide invaluable insights to the industry, catering to their needs for utilising cashless payment data. Unlike any other solution in the market, Vianet offers a truly end-to-end package, assisting numerous vending businesses in adopting cashless technology and data capture across their operations to make informed decisions.

Vianet had the distinction of being shortlisted in eight award categories, which were meticulously evaluated by an independent panel of industry experts during the spring. These panellists, distinguished figures from various sectors, assessed each entry according to strict criteria, ultimately determining the finalists in each category.

The Vendies Experience

“The venue itself was breath-taking, exuding elegance and charm, providing the perfect backdrop for this prestigious event. Not only was the event a celebration of excellence in the vending industry, but it also offered a fantastic opportunity for networking. I had the pleasure of engaging with fellow suppliers and operators, forging connections and exchanging ideas. The networking aspect of the evening proved invaluable, opening doors to potential collaborations and future partnerships”.  – Charlotte Biggs, Marketing & Communications Manager


Heartfelt congratulations to all the other award recipients at the event. The vending industry boasts an incredible pool of talent, and it is truly gratifying to witness their outstanding contributions being acknowledged. To learn more about SmartContact Pro, please click here.



­­Good Times as Par as The Eye Can See

On Thursday 1st June, Vianet invited clients across the business in the vending and hospitality industries to a golf day event held at Alwoodley Golf Club in Leeds. The attendees included blue chip companies, who have been loyal Vianet customers for many years. Customers like Lavazza, Compass, Montagu, JW Vending, Admiral Taverns, Stonegate, Red Oak, Robinsons, and Trust Inns attended, along with partners and associations like Suresite and the AVA. Attendees, along with Vianet staff were broken up into 6 teams to complete 18 holes throughout the day, creating an exciting occasion to network and collaborate.

It’s rare that Vianet gets to bring both sides of the business together in one space. Hospitality and unattended retail have many similarities in some aspects but can be worlds apart in others. However, sometimes these events spark conversations that can inspire new ideas, ways of working, and even introductions. It’s also a time for Vianet to thank its customers for their years of loyalty and cooperation while rolling out new products.


The Course

Alwoodley owns 257 acres of land, of which the course occupies 115 acres. This course has some of the most beautiful views, with the highest point being the 5th tee, from where there are views of (at least part of) 13 of the 18 holes. Many have ranked Alwoodley within the top 100 courses to play, for not only difficulty but experience. In Golf World’s list of The Top 100 Courses in the World You Can Play 2022, Alwoodley was ranked at No 57. Meanwhile, in National Club Golfer’s GB&I’s Top 100 Courses 2020, Alwoodley was ranked as the 28th best course in the British Isles. currently rank Alwoodley at No 41 in their Britain & Ireland list and at No 15 in their England list, describing it as “one of the finest and most subtle inland courses in the British Isles”.


Let’s Par-Tee

Upon arrival, guests were offered an array of breakfast options, along with a goodie bag and welcome pack. Jim Dickson, Vianet CEO, kicked the event off with a welcome speech and order of the day. Once breakfast was concluded, all participants headed out to the first hole and prepared for their big debut. Each team teed off in style and started their venture through the course.

A refreshment area was set up at the halfway point to refuel before continuing on to the next hole. After all 18 holes, attendees had finished the course and retired to the terrace for drinks. It was great to see so many customers captivated in lively conversation and healthy discussion. The day also offered an opportunity to connect customers with various industry associations/groups that they may have been interested in joining.


A Tee-riffic Day

The day came to a close with a delicious three-course meal paired with fine wine. In between courses, each team was awarded prizes, depending on their team score. All participants seemed to thoroughly enjoy their time at Alwoodley as well as the connections they made. We look forward to seeing everyone again at our next Vianet Golf Day. Thank you to everyone who participated, it was wonderful to catch up.



Compass Group are the largest contract foodservice company in the world, predominantly focus on Catering, Cleaning and Vending with some facilities management services.

In 2018, Vianet successfully won the preferred supplier status across Compass UK & Ireland to provide a volume of 5000 contactless readers over 5 years.

Find out more by clicking the image below to read our strategic partnership with Compass Group in further detail.

Compass Group Case Study

If you’d like to find out more about how our products and services can transform your vending business performance, please check out our Vending Solutions.

SmartVend DashboardVianet’s SmartVend data insight portal is the industry’s only cloud-based IoT (Internet of Things) end-to-end solution for the vending, coffee and unattended retail markets.

Built around an easy and intuitive dashboard, the insight portal is designed to accommodate bespoke configuration that reflects customer priorities.

SmartVend already includes a comprehensive reporting suite, product sales analysis, and actionable data insight, with real-time machine alarms and alerts and a newly developed service module offering invaluable operational capabilities.

With over 34,000 active contactless and telemetry devices across their unattended retail estate currently connected to the insight portal, there are over £3.8m sales processed and 4 million transactions reported remotely every month on SmartVend. This technology is also tested and compatible with 200+ vending machine models.

Vianet’s technology team have been continually developing SmartVend, evolving its software offerings within vending as part of an ongoing commitment to ensure they deliver against the present and – more importantly – future requirements of their customers and prospects.

In 2022, Phase 2 of the SmartVend development plan is currently underway, including several brand-new features offering customers a more extensive toolkit to manage their assets and machines.

This week, the team released phase 2.1 of the development including the following new features and enhancements…



Cash Management
Using the SmartVend App to scan cash bags at the point of collection reduces input errors and allows for easy cash reconciliation. SmartVend Cash Management compares data captured in the field/by the machine to that counted in the office, highlighting any discrepancies, and removing the possibility of revenue loss at every step.

Asset Management
SmartVend’s Asset Management solution provides real-time visibility of your assets; allowing you to monitor and track their location and status throughout their lifecycle; ensuring a streamlined process from order to shipping to installation and decommissioning.   

Ticket Dashboard
The new Ticket Dashboard provides immediate insight into potential problems across your estate that – when paired with our fantastic Route Planning capabilities – allows users to limit any potential loss in revenue when things go wrong, while auto-closure rules avoid any unnecessary call outs when issues are resolved.


Looking forward in 2022, there will be further releases in SmartVend on the roadmap that are coming soon including a new service dashboard, enhanced route scheduling and a third party finance integration.