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Caribou Coffee Brews Up Innovative Customer Service Using IBM Retail Systems


Improves Customer Experience Through Seamless Use of In-Store Technology

RALEIGH, NC - 29 Mar 2006: Gourmet coffeehouse operator Caribou Coffee says it has helped improve the customer experience at its 400 shops worldwide by implementing innovative IBM kiosk and point of sale (POS) technologies. Working with RDS Systems of Minneapolis, Minnesota, IBM has installed more than 900 SurePOS 500 point of sale systems and more than 100 IBM Anyplace Kiosk units at the Caribou locations, with plans to install 300 additional Anyplace Kiosk units by 2008. As a result, Caribou can be even more responsive to customer requests, handling even the most complex orders quickly, efficiently and accurately.

“Caribou is committed to providing both its customers and employees with the best service and support available, and IBM’s retail technology solutions help us to offer this quality of customer experience,” said Steven Bolduc, Senior POS Manager, IT Support for Caribou Coffee. “We’re driven by our service motto: ’Guests are always our priority - Everything else waits.’ IBM is the technology company we trust to provide us with the most reliable, integrated and easy-to-use systems for our coffeehouses.”

Innovative IBM Anyplace Kiosks help Caribou enhance employee productivity. Located in the barista (coffee-making) stations, these compact units help employees process orders quickly and easily using an advanced infrared touch screen display. Caribou says they are piloting these all-in-one kiosks as a manager’s workstation at two of its freestanding mall stores and are evaluating their use for employee training. Caribou is also looking at customer-facing applications. One of these would feature easy-to-read information on menu items, specials and promotions.

The SurePOS 500 is used by Caribou employees to “ring up” orders quickly and accurately. It features a space-saving footprint with an elegant, retail-hardened design that complements the Caribou store environment. The robustness of the SurePOS 500 solution means a separate back-office server is not necessary for Caribou.

“Caribou Coffee is a leader in using technology in innovative new ways to provide an exceptional customer experience,” said Steve Ladwig, general manager, IBM Retail Store Solutions. “With our portfolio of retail solutions, we can offer Caribou a complete store solution that can give them a competitive edge in the marketplace.”

About IBM
IBM, the world’s largest information technology and business services company, is the leader in providing the Retail Industry with a full range of e-business solutions, including: point-of-sale systems, automated self-checkout systems, other hardware and software technology, consulting focused on business transformation, IT strategy and planning, store operations improvement, and supply chain optimization, and with services, such as outsourcing, managed operations, systems integration, and application development and design. IBM has a list of retail customers in 100 countries worldwide that reads like a “Who’s Who” of retailing. For more information on IBM Retail Solutions, please visit

About Caribou Coffee
Caribou Coffee, founded in 1992 and headquartered in Minneapolis, Minnesota, is the second largest gourmet coffeehouse operator in the United States based on the number of coffeehouses. As of January 1, 2006, Caribou Coffee had 395 coffeehouses, including nine licensed locations. Their coffeehouses are located in 15 states and the District of Columbia and two international markets. Caribou Coffee offers its customers high-quality gourmet coffee and espresso-based beverages, as well as specialty teas, baked goods, whole bean coffee, branded merchandise and related products. In addition, Caribou Coffee sells products to grocery stores and mass merchandisers, office coffee providers, airlines, hotels, sports and entertainment venues, college campuses and other commercial customers. For more information about Caribou Coffee, visit


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