Source: Pret a Manger

Pret Express will be introduced to convenience stores, forecourts, universities, healthcare facilities and workplaces

Pret a Manger is set to take on Costa Coffee with plans to trial a 24/7, self-service coffee-to-go station. 

The facility, dubbed ‘Pret Express’, will be introduced to convenience stores, forecourts, universities, healthcare facilities and workplaces. 

It aims to offer customers its products in places where Pret baristas aren’t able to operate. These include a range of slow roasted 100% organic coffees, fresh milk and teas.

Each station will create up to 21 drink recipes and will come with its own cashless payment terminal. JDE Peet’s will be providing the self-service technology and capabilities.

The service will be initially trialled in 20 locations across the UK over the coming 12 months, with a “strong expansion plan for the subsequent years”, the sandwich chain told The Grocer.

The move forms the next step of its transformation strategy that it first laid out in summer last year. It was designed to bring more people to Pret, including plans to open 200 new UK shops over the next two years.

It revealed last month that it aims to double the size of its business within the next five years, and intends to hire at least 3,000 team members and baristas by the end of 2023.

“We are excited to be working with JDE Peet’s to launch Pret Express, our first ever self-serve coffee machines,” said Guy Meakin, UK trading director at Pret a Manger.

”This is new territory for Pret, which will allow more people across the country to enjoy Pret’s organic coffee and tea on the go, in places where there isn’t the right space to set up a new Pret shop. Using the latest technology from JDE Peet’s, Pret Express will give people a delicious and convenient coffee boost, at the touch of a button.”

JDE Peet’s marketing director professional for UK&I Sarah Lonorgan said: “Expectations for coffee and tea on-the-go have evolved, with people seeking the highest quality experiences at any location.

“Through this innovative partnership, Pret Express will deliver a wider range of products across all out-of-home segments, to a broader audience than ever before. We are delighted to partner with Pret to debut this powerful new contender to the ‘coffee to go’ market and look forward to seeing this in action.”