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Imperial

Imperial Company is installing cashless payment options at vending and food service machines, as shown in this screen grab from a promotional video.

One year after acquiring a Davenport-based vending and food service company, Imperial Company is expanding in the Quad-Cities.

Imperial, with operations in Oklahoma, Arkansas Texas, Iowa and Illinois, acquired Davenport's Valley Vending last spring. Since then, the company has upgraded its technology and outgrown its current facility, at 2501 Blackhawk St., Davenport.

Officials recently announced Imperial has purchased the former 7G Distributing location, at 8717 Northwest Blvd. The family-owned beer distributor moved to the Eastern Iowa Industrial Center last year.

Crews plan to finish renovating the 37,000-square-foot building this summer. The new facility will house a warehouse, food coolers, dry storage, a Lightspeed pick line, commissary, offices and indoor parking, according to a news release. 

"We are committed to investing in growth and are excited to continue our expansion into the Quad-City market with our soon-to-open new facility," said Lance Whorton, president of Imperial Company, in the release. "As we continue to deliver on our promise of bringing the freshest quality products to our customers through world class service and best-in-class technology, this expansion builds upon our successful acquisition of Valley Vending, and will enable us to continue to add new employment opportunities as we grow and scale along with the needs of our customers."

Founded in 1979, Imperial provides vending, micro markets, catering, corporate dining and coffee services. It currently employs more than 700 people across all of its facilities, generating more than $100 million in annual sales.

Officials expect to add jobs with the Davenport expansion, but have yet to say how many employees will work in the Quad-Cities. 

Following the acquisition of Valley Vending, Imperial upgraded more than 500 self-service retail and vending machines, using USA Technologies' cashless payments and software, according to the release. 

"We are thrilled with our ongoing partnership with Imperial," said Maeve McKenna Duska, vice president of marketing and strategic development for USA Technologies, in the release. "Their continued growth with the acquisition of Valley Vending, and now the opening of the new facility, underscores the company’s commitment to innovation. Our technology ensures they are bringing not only the right products to the Quad-Cities region, but enabling consumers to pay the way that is most comfortable to them, whether it is cash, credit or mobile payment."

As part of the acquisition and purchase of the new facility in Davenport, Imperial officials said they plan to implement additional services to local self-serve vending machines. That includes the continued roll-out of cashless payment options, a larger variety of products and fresh food items, in-house coffee roasting and more. 

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