Keeping Louisville Running
How Heine Brothers’ uses Gusto’s technology to stay competitive
In business, it used to be that if you had 14 locations, especially in one region, you were the big guy. Today, at least in the coffeehouse arena, that’s no longer true. So for Heine Brothers’ coffeehouse based in Louisville, Ky. – with 13 lively storefronts selling fair trade and organic coffee concoctions as well as a mobile Airstream espresso bar roaming city streets – staying ahead of the competition is key to its success.
Heine Brothers’, co-founded by Mike Mays in 1994 in the Highland neighborhood, has nearly 240 employees – baristas, roastery experts and other coffee aficionados – who keep the business running. And of course, there are the many local coffee drinkers who depend on Heine Brothers’ for their morning and afternoon jolt. Additionally, the company works with numerous community groups, recycles and buys locally and chose its headquarters location in part to help reinvigorate the area. This adds up to a lot of work and responsibility for Mays and his team to manage.
Time for a change
For Mays, that means choosing a technology partner that can help him increase sales, streamline ordering and update prices, menu options and other information quickly and uniformly across all Heine Brothers’ locations. The software he had been relying on, he says, was “a legacy point-of-sale system stuck in the 20th century.” To update the price of a cappuccino or a Snickers latte or add a new seasonal menu item such as a white chocolate pumpkin latte, he and his team had to enter the change at each location. It was a tedious, time-consuming and frustrating task that he describes as “clunky.”
About 18 months ago, he’d had enough. He began a new “21st century” partnership with Gusto and its next-generation point-of-sale (POS) system.
“We chose Gusto because it’s cloud-based, so we can sync information across locations,” says Mays. “Now Heine Brothers’ is nimble in a way it hadn’t been before.” Moreover, knowing that Gusto’s system would seamlessly integrate with Heine Brothers’ loyalty app “gave us the confidence we needed to go ahead and make the investment.”
A perfectly brewed partnership
Giving its customers confidence is exactly what Gusto hopes to accomplish, says Niko Papademetriou, the company’s vice president of major accounts and business development. Gusto’s POS system has unique conversational ordering functionality that helps baristas build relationships with their customers. The system also keeps the line moving and offers one central point for maintaining the menu, pricing, discounts and loyalty, allowing Mays’ business to grow “in ways that are right for the company,” says Papademetriou.
A partner to support the vision
A speedy payment processing system is imperative for Heine Brothers’ customers, as they seek faster, easier payments so they can focus on chatting with the baristas or their morning coffee meetings. That’s why Gusto’s POS system is powered by Vantiv, Now Worldpay. “Faster and easier,” says Papademetriou when describing Worldpay’s payment processing solutions. “They’ve been a valuable partner.”
All of this increased flexibility and efficiency has been a boon to Heine Brothers’ business. Now Mays and his staff can concentrate more on what matters most to them – satisfying customers and being an active and valuable partner to the community. Mays says working with Gusto gives him more opportunities to focus on building these kinds of relationships and accomplishing goals that benefit the overall community and economy.
Location: Bethesda, MD
Location: Louisville, KY
Independent since 1994
Food and beverage