AVI (Automatic Vendors, Inc.) began as a vending concern in 1960 and expanded into commissary operations to supply its machines with fresh items in the 70s. The 80s saw expansion into manual foodservice, which now accounts for 37% of the business (vending accounts for 36%).
The early 2000s saw AVI deploy its first campus-wide dining operation (at Wayne State University) and move into hospital and B&I foodservice. It formed a separate division to operate manual foodservice in its college and healthcare accounts in 2006, added a leisure/entertainment division in 2011 and AVI Fresh Corporate Services last year for B&I.
In 2013, AVI continued to add new clients and announced a major evolution in its corporate structure. with 25-year company veteran Scott Grzelewski appointed to the newly created position of COO.
AVI also expanded its relationships with BMW of North America, Catholic Health Partners, Johnson Controls, Meijer, Timken and Xerox. Now in 34 states, the company completed its February 2013 acquisition of Sanese Services while expanding its market penetration in Central Ohio and Northern Kentucky.
In partnership with Bob Evans Farms, AVI introduced a new Bob Evans Express concept designed for venues such as workplace cafés, universities, airports, malls, service plazas and hospitals. With a minimal 500-sq.ft. footprint the concept features a menu of portable Bob Evans favorites, like Wildfire Chicken Salad, sausage gravy and biscuits and slow-roasted turkey.
Also new is a franchise relationship with Tim Hortons while the internal concept development team launched Modeco Coffee Roasters, a premium coffee bar concept.
The Market C micro market concept has continued to expand rapidly in the B&I sector with new planograms adapted to the preferences and tastes of millennials, including freshly made gourmet wraps and sandwiches