Digital Menus Made Easy

Adrian J Cotterill, Editor-in-Chief

Already in 2009 we have seen a number of ‘new business’ announcements – many respected industry leaders say of course that during a downturn is in fact the time to start a new business or forge ahead with existing initiatives and so in a few years time it will be interesting to see how the likes of DIGICOM (announced October 2007) or Signature Digital Menus Ltd (the topic of this post) will have fared.

Peter Critchley and Barry Thurston, the Directors of Beaver Solutions, have teamed up with food industry expert Tony Ingles to form a company dedicated to the provision of digital menu boards in the Quick Service Restaurant (QSR) industry and other food outlet businesses.

Barry Thurston, Tony Ingles and Peter Critchley (left to right in the picture) - the three directors of Signature Digital Menus

Barry Thurston, Tony Ingles and Peter Critchley (left to right in the picture) - the three directors of Signature Digital Menus

We always say that niches work and this is definitely a niche, it’s also an area where all three have extensive experience, indeed Beaver Solutions has done some pretty good examples of digital menu boards in the last year or so – we particularly liked their simple but effective menu boards at St Pancras Hospital and at U4 Coffee.

Many in the UK will know or know of Tony Ingles – he was a common sight at shows and conferences over the last few years as he (we guess) weighed up his options in what to do in the digital space.

Tony was previously Managing Director for traditional signage company Dan Display Ltd (Dan Display pretty much specialised in light boxes and modular menu systems).

Barry Thurston, Director Signature Digital Menus Ltd and Group Chairman of Beaver Solutions told us “By starting Signature Digital Menus with Tony Ingles, we’ve created a company that has the complete solution when it comes to digital menu boards. The benefits are clear: quick pricing changes, better product promotion and the flexibility to change to any occurrence. We have the support of the leading suppliers in the industry and with Tony’s experience, as well as our expertise in digital signage, Signature Digital Menus has a unique, full turn-key offering.”

The provision of digital menu boards is nothing new (though as we have said many times before, we have always been surprised at how slowly the adoption of digital has been) what we particularly like about the way this new business is setup is the ‘full turn-key offering.

What Signature Digital Menus Ltd has done is piece together leading suppliers and providers, in this case Sanyo, Scala, Vogels and Matrox to offer a complete solution, NOT as ‘one brand’ as the official press release says (cos’ I am sure that NONE of the brand managers at Sanyo, Scala, Vogels or Matrox would be very happy with that) BUT most definitely this is the best and only way to offer a ‘full turn-key’ solution.

Peter Critchley, Director of Signature Digital Menus Ltd and Managing Director of Beaver Solutions was quoted in the press release as saying (and he’s spot on here) “We found that clients of digital menus don’t want to have to mix and match with the services they get. By having all the components of a complete digital menu board solution under one roof, Signature Digital Menus Ltd can offer clients one complete package.”

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