The 12-sided £1 coin planned for release in 2017 may cost the UK’s vending operators far more than the Royal Mint has projected.
Converting an estimated 1.2 million vending machines, parking meters, laundry and other coin-operated equipment to accept the new £1 coin could cost more than £200 million according to industry experts. Earlier this year, the Royal Mint estimated that the cost of converting these machines would be around £20 million.
Jonathan Hilder, chief executive of the Automatic Vending Association (AVA), which represents vending in the UK and Ireland, explained that it will cost the industry alone about £72.8 million to adapt the country’s estimated 450,000 coffee, snack and drink machines. The AVA wants the Treasury of England to help pay for modifications.
The new coin, unveiled in March, is said to be the most secure in the world. It will be made from two types of metal, like the current £2 coin. It will also feature embedded luminescent particles that are visible under a particular light, making counterfeits easier to spot.