What is Key Cage?
Key Cage is a fully mechanical device, with no electronic element. It allows for an unassisted exchange of gas cylinders with the use of a mechanical key bought earlier. The operation does not require the participation of trained staff.
Solutions present on the market
The existing solutions have been based on traditional cages accessible to trained staff of a given trade point. Owing to the staff participation, the purchasing process was complicated and time-consuming. Participation of a shop employee generated a series of problems, including – primarily – costs.
Among other solutions available on the market there are fully automated, electro-mechanical self-service devices – Gas Cylinder Vending Machines. They constitute an alternative to traditional cages and they allow to exchange gas cylinders without staff participation. A client makes payment in the machine single-handedly. Then, a built-in computer enables the client to accomplish the process of cylinder exchange.
Key Cage is a patent-pending solution that may be placed between a traditional cage and a Gas Cylinder Vending Machine in terms of both functionality and price.
Key Cage allows to build a completely new business model. Key Cage is installed in parking lots, in areas in front of petrol stations, supermarkets and other trade points. In order to use the device, a client needs to buy a suitable key in the trade point where the Key Cage is installed. There are several kinds of keys and they are offered in different prices. Each kind defines a different cylinder type that is being exchanged. For example: a client who has an 11kg cylinder buys the A key for price specified by a given trade point. Then, having the key, s/he goes to the device with an empty cylinder and using the key s/he may exchange the empty cylinder for a full one. This process does not require the participation of a shop employee and it is carried out by the client single-handedly.
The involvement of a trade point in the sale of the key allows to manage the gas price in the process of cylinder exchange and thereby to leave the sales commission for the trade point. This model does not generate costs related to the operation of the device by employees.