Hospitality Innovations Meet CEO Benny Wee Vendfun

Interview with Benny Wee (Vendfun) as published in Asia Business Outlook

Technological advancements are transforming every sector, and the hospitality industry is no exception. Leading the charge in utilizing technology for operational ease and delivering exceptional guest experiences, Vendfun has positioned itself as an innovator in the hospitality sector. Founded in 2020, Vendfun has swiftly become a trailblazer in providing multi-functional hospitality kiosks, revolutionizing the check-in and check-out processes for hotels and homestays.

vendfun benny wee, Hospitality Innovations

Benny Wee, the Founder and CEO, spearheaded the introduction of the Vendfun Hybrid Kiosk in early 2020, a groundbreaking innovation that seamlessly integrates self-service check-in and check-out functionalities with vending capabilities. Benny’s visionary leadership emphasizes both operational efficiency and elevating customer satisfaction through cutting-edge technology.

Professional Journey & Expertise

Benny brings a wealth of experience to the hospitality sector. His journey from a Customer Service Manager in the UK to Country Manager in Taiwan, later becoming the GM of Global Sales and Operations for a US company, provided a solid foundation. With 17 years in the semiconductor industry and a stint in vending machine supply, Benny’s diverse background uniquely positions him as a leader who integrates technology into hospitality industry. Vendfun being a new startup Benny has to wear several hats such as shouldering responsibility for its strategies, product development, partnerships, sales and marketing, and its operations too. As company steadily growing, few keys responsibility has been delegate to our CTO and Sales Director.

Pioneering Innovation Amidst Challenges

The game-changing Vendfun Hybrid Kiosk, unveiled in Malaysia in the late 2020 redefines conventional check-in and check-out processes by seamlessly integrating self-service functionalities with vending capabilities. A brainchild of Benny, it was conceptualised amid the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, this innovative kiosk offers customers the convenience of self-check-in, check-out, and walk-in bookings, while also providing a unique shopping experience for snacks, beverages, toiletries, and more.

Beyond customer convenience, Vendfun’s kiosks contribute to a new revenue stream for hotels through merchandise sales. “Understanding the paramount importance of customer satisfaction, our kiosks are meticulously designed to elevate the guest experience from the moment they step into the hotel lobby to the seamless check-out process,” states Benny Wee.

vendfun hotel-check-in-kiosk self-service kiosk, Hospitality Innovations

Core Values & Sustainability Commitment

Vendfun’s core values center on addressing genuine customer pain points. The company is committed to providing peace of mind to independent hotels through automation, ensuring their processes are streamlined. This commitment extends to delivering a wow experience for guests during every phase of their stay.

Our goal is to establish ourselves as the leading brand in the hospitality industry, uniquely focusing on automation

Benny Wee

Integration of Technologies

Vendfun’s integration of innovation is exemplified by its industry-first hybrid kiosk solution. This revolutionary solution not only addresses staffing issues and enhances guest convenience but also significantly reduces check-in time. “As leaders in the hospitality industry, our innovation not only advances technology but also serves a practical purpose by integrating multiple functionalities,” states Benny Wee.

The approach is rooted in openness to customer feedback and it is taken as a fundamental aspect of Vendfun’s innovation strategy. The company’s philosophy goes beyond selling products to providing a comprehensive hospitality ecosystem. Smart room, in-room ordering and a human chat-bot cover the entire customer journey. The focus on in-room automation aligns with sustainability goals, minimizing energy wastage in collaboration with independent hotels.

Achievements & Global Expansion

In 2021, Vendfun successfully launched a crowdfunding project, surpassing its target within 24 hours. It also excelled in a major ASEAN startup contest, securing a top-four finalist spot among 300 participants. With coverage in 10 Malaysian states and international deployments in Singapore, Vendfun is advancing its global presence. Future plans include developing virtual e-Concierge solutions for the US and cost-effective ordering systems for Australia, slated for deployment in Q1 2024.

Looking ahead, Benny envisions Vendfun becoming the leading brand in the hospitality industry, uniquely focusing on automation. The company aims to offer a holistic hospitality ecosystem, covering everything from front desk automation to trip planning.

Benny Wee, Founder & CEO

Benny Wee‘s journey and Vendfun’s innovative approach underscore a commitment to excellence, sustainability, and customer-centric solutions. As the company continues to adapt to industry trends and customer needs, Benny’s leadership philosophy ensures Vendfun remains at the forefront of innovation in the dynamic hospitality sector.