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APEX Development History

APEX introduces its history of
original machine development
over half century.
  • From founding to the 1970s The Roots of APEX
  • 1980s The Birth of APEX CORPOTARION
  • 1990s Concentrating again in Vending Machine Operator Business
  • 2000s Towards No.1 Cup-Type Vending Machine Operator

From founding to the 1970s

Societal Events

  • 1963: Broadcast of “Astro Boy” marks the start of domestic TV animation series.
  • 1972: Sapporo Winter Olympics and Munich Olympics held.
  • 1972: First pandas appeared at Ueno Zoo.
  • 1977: Sadaharu Oh achieved the world record of 756 home runs and received the first People's Honor Award.

Prior history:The Establishment of Obu Spinning Co., Ltd.

The roots of APEX go back to 1901, when Saju Mori founded a textile manufacturing business. In 1931. President Motoatsu Mori established the Obu Textile Co., Ltd. (renamed as Obu Spinning Co., Ltd. in 1957), as a specialized manufacturer of English-style knitting wool, special synthetic yarns, wool fabric and alpaca linings.

Cocoa has been one of our standard drinks since the company’s inauguration.

1964:Cocoa was the Original Starting Point for Product Development, initiated by the President.

APEX cocoa originated when former President Hajime Mori began to develop it himself in his home kitchen, since sales of imported products were not growing at that time. After repeated trials of purchasing and blending various cocoa materials, he developed his own original recipe by blending in a small amount of coffee as a hidden flavor ingredient. While the flavor of this product has been repeatedly adjusted to match the changing preferences of the times, it has become our longest selling item and remains many customers' favorite drink right up to the present day.

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Photos, from left: Oasis by Hoshizaki Denki Co., Ltd. (now Hoshizaki Electric Co., Ltd.); CD-2 cold cup machine by Tsugami Seisakusho Co., Ltd. (now Tsugami Corporation; HB-10 hot cup machine by Shin Mitsubishi Jukogyo Co., Ltd. (now Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd.)

1961:Beginning of New Business focus as an Automatic Vending Machine Operator

Operational management began with development of fountain-style juice and ice cream vending machines (see photo at left) at locations where people gather for leisure, including sightseeing spots and beaches in the Nagoya area, prior to the establishment of Japan Vending Service Co., Ltd.

1963: Sales offices opened at Tokyo, Nagoya and Osaka in April.

1963:Established as Japan Vending Service Co., Ltd.

Research into automatic vending machines began in 1961. The following year, two company members were dispatched to the US to investigate the vending machine operations business. In 1963, the company was designated as a certified operator in the cup dispensing category by Coca-Cola (Japan) Co., Ltd., and the Japan Vending Service Co., Ltd. was established for this purpose.

1972:Introduction of the CVC・1, the industry's first cold drink with ice machine CVC・1

The former President Hajime Mori(see photo at left),Cocoa material packaging when sold at that time(see photo at right)


Societal Events

  • 1981: Successful launch of space shuttle Columbia.
  • 1984: Japan becomes the nation of highest longevity in the world.
  • 1984: Six koalas arrive in Japan from Australia for the first time.
  • 1984: Los Angeles Olympics held.
  • 1986: Comet Halley passes near the eart after an interval of 76 years.
  • 1988: Opening of the Seikan Tunnel and Seto Ohashi Bridge, the world’s longest of their kind.
  • 1988: Seoul Olympics held.

1981: Introduction of APEX 2400 as the Industry's First Hot and Cold Drink Vending Machine.

The APEX 2400 was the industry's first machine equipped to dispense both hot and cold drinks. A super large-scale automatic vending machine, it offered 24 flavors and 53 different items. By expanding sales measures and policies, and mobilizing three times the normal number of sales personnel, APEX was able to bring enjoyment to an enhanced number of customers through automatic drink vending machines.

Introduction of APEX Super Brewer-303, with the World's First Paper Drip Style Extraction Mechanism in a Vending machine.

1984: Company Name changed to APEX CORPOTATION.

Approaching its 21th anniversary, the company changed its name from Japan Vending Service Co., Ltd. to APEX Corporation. The corporate logo retains the capital letters from the former company name, Japan Vending Service, to honor the spirit of the original and the success achieved since its inauguration.

1986: Realized the Industry's First Vending Machine capable of Simultaneous Left and Right Sales. Also Announced the APEX 5000 Super Brewer, Incorporating the Industry's First Automatic Muddler Function for Cold  Beverages.

1988: Industry's First Vending Machine Incorporating a CMS, or Cup Mixing System.

CMS(Cup Mixing System) Extracts the Full Goodness of Ingredients.

In 1988, APEX developed CMS, a mechanism to brew and mix raw materials right in each cup. By freshly brewing each beverage, and mixing in sugar and cream on the spot, this delivered far better flavor and aroma, for a more enjoyable cup of coffee. It also offered advantages in terms of cleanliness and safety compared to conventional cup dispensing mechanisms.

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Societal Events

  • 1992: Mamoru Mohri, Japanese astronaut, travels into space.
  • 1992: Swimmer Kyoko Iwasaki, only fourteen years old, wins a gold medal in the Barcelona Olympics.
  • 1993: Soccer’s J League inaugurated.
  • 1998: Nagano Winter Olympics held.
  • 1998: Hit movie “Titanic” released.
  • 1998: “Charisma” becomes a buzzword for popular sales clerks and beauticians.

1993: Received Good Design Award for Industry's First Component Style Presentation Machine, with Three Models: Regular Coffee, Leaf Tea and Variety.

1997: Introduction of Industry's First Deposit Style Paper Cup Collection Machine.

1998: VENDOR VISION®, Industry First Visual Imaging Component, Incorporated into Automatic Vending Machine.

Visual imaging component adds enjoyment while waiting.

Introduction of Vender Vision made it possible to demonstrate the brewing process and introduce new products visually. Customers can enjoy visual entertainment during the short time it takes for their drink to be prepared, with a variety of content including video images, games and animation.

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Streaming video gives an inside look at the automatic vending machine.


2001: The world’s fastest cup vending machines at the time. APEX 120QRC

Through focused research and technological innovation, APEX dramatically reduced the time required from ordering to receiving a finished drink. 
This marked the beginning of a new APEX philosophy of delivering superior service through innovation.

2005: Announced APEX 130REC(T), a High-Function Machine Equipped with a Large-Screen Touch Panel Display and Offering Multi-Lingual and Multi-Dialect Capabilities.

This advanced machine incorporated a large touch panel and was capable of communicating in six languages, as well as five different Japanese dialects: Tohoku, Nagoya, Kansai, Hiroshima and Hakata. It incorporated frozen drink and ice-making devices, internal cooling apparatus and espresso extraction equipment, and represented the ultimate in APEX innovation and performance at that time.

2008: Introduction of the CS-1, coffee server Using Cup Vending Machine Technology.

CS-1 is a commercial cafe server capable of meeting the needs of various locations and scenarios, including cafes, restaurants, hotels and showrooms. It enables individual control over each beverage?not only the selection of raw beans and their roasting and blending, but also the amounts of coffee and water used and the brewing time, for optimal quality and taste in each cup of coffee.

Societal Events

  • 2005: Opening of Global Harmony Exposition in Aichi Prefecture
  • 2008: Beijing Olympics held.
  • 2010: Spacecraft Hayabusa returns from the asteroid Itokawa.
  • 2013: Shigeo Nagashima and Hideki Matsui receive People's Honor Award.
  • 2013: Mt. Fuji registered as World Cultural Heritage site.
  • New terms come into popular use: “Cool Biz” and  “Choiwaru Oyaji”(little bad old man) in 2005, “Guerrilla Gou” (heavy guerrilla-like rain) in 2008, “Joshikai” (female-only party) in 2010 and “Jejeje” (indicating surprise in the Tohoku dialect) and “Baigaeshi” (double revenge) in 2013.
Paper cups are made of timber from forest thinning operations with a special design recognizing the ecological cycle.

APEX and the Environment

APEX has taken the lead in working on ecological issues and implementing various environmental activities, including recycling of used paper cups beginning in 1998, turning coffee grounds into fertilizer in 2008, carbon recycling in 2010 and the development of environmentally friendly cup-style automatic vending machines. In 2013, APEX began to use paper cups made from timber derived from forest thinning. We will continue to promote environmental conservation in the years ahead.

2008: Introduction of the APEX 120QREC, Incorporating an Automatic Capping Function and the Industry's First Dehumidification System for Powdered Material Canisters.

The APEX 120QREC can automatically install a cover, with drinking outlet, on filled beverage cups. In addition, it also offers various drink variations?including espresso, with an exclusive mill and extraction mechanism separate from the regular coffee mechanism, and frozen drinks by way of an exclusively developed ice crusher. Furthermore, it is equipped with a dehumidification system that maintains the freshness of the beverages.

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2010: Introduction of the APEX 100QRC, Next-Generation Energy-Saving Machine, with Power Consumption Approximately Half that of the QV Series.

The APEX 100QRC is a cup-style automatic vending machine that saves energy and reduces environmental impact. It was designed for comprehensive energy saving, with features such as reinforced thermal insulation for the hot water tank and a lower operating ratio for the ice making machine, as well as eliminating unnecessary power consumption by not using an internally illuminated flavor card.

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2010: Introduction of APEX's First Original Office Coffee System, the PT-1/PT-1U.

This office coffee system incorporates an exclusively developed low-pressure extraction mechanism to reproduce authentic paper drip coffee. It can deliver fresh coffee anytime with an individually packaged POD drink system that protects contents from oxidization.

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2013: Introduction of the APEX 85QVR, the Industry's First Super Eenergy-Saving Cup Vending Machine, Incorporating a Thermos Type Water Tank.

The APEX 85QVR incorporates a hot water tank with vacuum thermal insulation jacket co-developed with a leading thermos bottle maker, which maintains heat much better and realizes substantial savings in power consumption. It emerged as the industry's most energy-efficient cup-style automatic vending machine, and incorporated other beneficial functions as well, including the use of a non-CFC refrigerant, CO2, for the cooling system.

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2013: February 22 marked the 50th anniversary of APEX Corporation.

APEX passed its 50th anniversary in 2013, and we continue to provide “The Best Cup, Making Your Moment” by continually refining products and services year after year.

APEX 50th Anniversary Paper Cup
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