A Waukesha-based startup delivering coffee to customers through its automated kitchen and contactless drive-thru hopes to launch its first operation in City of Pewaukee this summer. Octane Coffee’s automated systems can serve coffee, tea, smoothies and juice drinks in 30 seconds or less. When customers order and pay through the app, Octane’s “robotic server” GPS tracks a customer so that production coincides with their arrival, founder Adrian Deasy said. In fact, customers can make recurring coffee pickup schedules and if it turns out the customer is on vacation or otherwise not available, Octane Coffee will know and cancel the order. The startup would like to open its first location in the Veloce Indoor Speedway parking lot in City of Pewaukee at W229N1400 Westwood Drive, northeast of the I-94 and Redford Boulevard intersection. A human will stop by once a day to clean and restock supplies, but the automated system will otherwise run unattended for 24 hours at a time. Octane Coffee would open in August pending City of Pewaukee Plan Commission and Common Council approval. Because the process is automated, Octane has removed a lot of labor and overhead cost, which means the startup's coffee is more profitable per drink and cheaper than Starbucks, Deasy said. The average wait time for a Starbucks coffee is 4 minutes and sometimes longer depending on the line, Deasy said, adding that Octane Coffee "sells time with a great cup of coffee.” Octane's coffee will have a familiar taste too. The company partnered with Milwaukee-based Stone Creek Coffee Co. for all its coffee products – Stone Creek co-founder Eric Resch, who invested in Octane, also sits on the startup's board of directors, Deasy added. Octane’s business model is certainly one-of-a-kind in the Midwest, but the building itself is also architecturally unique. Although it may look like a building, Octane Coffee is actually a repurposed shipping container with a metal-paneled facade designed to look like wood. [caption id="attachment_522877" align="aligncenter" width="1784"] A rendering of Octane Coffee's proposed site at W229N1400 Westwood Drive in City of Pewaukee.[/caption] The 20-foot container, which is approximately the size of Chevy Suburban, is packed with a robot, refrigeration, coffee makers, cups, lids and ingredients for its products. Deasy’s long-term vision is to franchise Octane Coffee, manufacture more containers in Waukesha and ship them anywhere in the United States, he said. “Someone could theoretically buy one, two, or three of these, become a franchisee and throw them in their major metro area,” Deasy said. [caption id="attachment_522875" align="aligncenter" width="2560"] Octane Coffee founder and CEO Adrian Deasy.[/caption] When Deasy began developing Octane two years ago, he understood that the coffee industry – the drive-thru coffee space in particular – was ripe for disruption. Now, Deasy believes Octane Coffee may see quicker adoption with the coronavirus pandemic shifting consumer behavior. “Six months ago, if you didn’t have a drive-thru or mobile ordering, you were done,” Deasy said. “The world that we thought was going to come in 5 or 10 years has all of a sudden become today and tomorrow.” Octane recently closed on a seed round of just over $400,000 backed by primarily Wisconsin investors. The company is also slated to appearon the fifth season of Project Pitch It, WISN-TV Channel 12’s Shark-Tank style show were entrepreneurs pitch their ideas to investors. Click here for a video of Octane Coffee's robot serving coffee.
Holiday flash sale! Subscribe to BizTimes and save nearly 40%!