If seizing upon new opportunities is a true measure of corporate versatility, then International Leisure Products (ILP) is a textbook example of how to succeed in business. “Starting as Cornwall Amusements, and later buying Jimdandy Vending, we were a supplier of arcade games, pool tables, and vending machines,” says Andy Leger, owner of the Cornwall, Ontario-based company. “But beginning in 1998, our clients wanted us to provide ATM cash machines.”
Hesitant about such requests due to the considerable $13,000 cost per ATM, Leger nonetheless kept watch on the industry. “In 1999, ATMs came down to between $9,000 and $10,000 per machine,” he recalls. “At that point, I setup ILPatm. In 2003, we sold off Cornwall Amusements and kept ILP as an ATM provider and distributor.”
While ATMs were less expensive, they still required significant financial commitments. ILP was forced to evolve to meet such demands. It began with creating an amalgamation with smaller, similar companies, to improve its purchasing power. ILP was able to acquire machines on a wholesale basis, reselling them at small margins to downstream partners. Equally important, Leger selected Triton—one of the largest ATM manufacturers in North America—as his supplier. “Triton’s superior engineering and powerful TDL language software enables them to meet present and future industry challenges,” Leger says. “Our customers appreciate the quality and reliability of [Triton’s] ATMs.”
In 2009, ILP enhanced this technical advantage by including Triton error codes in the redesign of its website, giving clients and partners yet another tool to resolve any operational issues. The company followed this up by becoming qualified as a Triton-certified-technician company, to better meet the need of its
Because nonfunctioning ATM parts are typically shipped to the United States for service, it may take weeks for repairs. However, by servicing its own machines, ILP’s customers can have their ATMs up and running within days, sometimes hours.
ILP’s efforts have enabled it to become “a one-stop shop for our clients,” Leger says. “We can program, box, and ship ATMs so that, when they arrive at our customer’s door, it is just a matter of plugging them in and turning them on.”
This business model has enabled ILP to sell an average of 800–900 machines per year, with each ATM averaging between 150 and 3,000 transactions per month.
ILP’s technical expertise allows its customers to stay ahead of government regulations and mandates. Consider the recent legislation requiring ATMs to read new microchip encryption in debit and credit cards. In response, ILP undertook a dedicated initiative to install new microchip-capable card readers and keypads within its machines. Consequently, most of ILP’s customers are compliant nearly a year before the final mandates.
By meeting the demands of the evolving ATM marketplace, ILP maintains its entrepreneurial pace. “We’ll continue to keep our thumb on the pulse of business within our industry,” Leger says. “By anticipating and acting upon change, we’re confident that we can continue thriving in the current economy.”