After college, Nick Yates began his career working for Mojo Advertising in Sydney Australia. His work with Mojo Advertising included being a senior media buyer for the Qantas Airlines and Toyota Motor Company accounts. At Mojo Nick Yates was responsible for buying strategies and negotiating TV, Radio and Press campaigns. Both accounts Nick worked on combined for over $50m a year in total media spending.
In 2002, Nick Yates started Healthy Vending Pty Ltd, the world’s first Healthy Vending machine business. The concept of Fresh Healthy Vending Machines came to Nick Yates when he attended the National Automated Vending Association Expo in Las Vegas early 2002. Nick Yates identified a “South Beach Diet Bar” placed in a machine filled with traditional junk food. At that very moment the light bulb in Nick’s head went off and he rushed back to Australia to launch Healthy Vending Pty Ltd. While there are many who claim the concept was their own; there was only one registered Healthy Vending Company in the world during 2002, it was Healthy Vending Pty Ltd.
Healthy Vending Pty Ltd placed over 250 healthy vending machines throughout Australia between 2002-2004. Most contained only “macro-biotic” products as healthy snacks and drinks were not as readily available as they are now. The company also built the first and online E-commerce platform for customers to order healthy snacks and drinks, and negotiated fulfillment for nationwide delivery by piggybacking a confectionary distribution chain that already existed in Australia.
After witnessing the increase in demand for healthier food options in the United States, Nicholas Yates sold Healthy Vending Pty Ltd in 2005 and moved to San Diego, California with the intention of introducing Healthy Vending to North America for the first time. In June 2006, America’s first and only healthy vending company was launched under the same premise as Healthy Vending Pty Ltd Sydney, Australia. Between 2006-2010 the company placed 1800 healthy vending machines throughout 250 markets of North America.
In 2010 Fresh Healthy Vending was launched as the first healthy vending “franchise” in the US and currently operates with over 200 franchisees in the US, Canada, Puerto Rico and the Bahamas. Fresh Healthy Vending is a public company trading on the OTC.BB (VEND) and is the largest healthy vending machine company in the world with a footprint of over 2400 units.
Nicholas Yates created the first Healthy Vending initiative, FreshandHealthy.Org on behalf of Fresh Healthy Vending, which has offered as incentive over $1,000,000 in grants to schools, businesses, hospitals, and community centers in an attempt to replace their “junk food” vending machines with state-of-the art Healthy Vending machines. To date the initiative has donated over $300,000 and remains the only initiative of its kind providing decision makers in key vending locations a Fresh Healthy Vending machines “choice”.
Currently, Nick Yates continues to build a solid portfolio of investments outside of the vending industry and within the Health, Wellness, Tech and Real Estate sectors. He is also an advocate for childhood obesity prevention currently establishing his own San Diego based fund raising programs.
As of July 2013, Nick Yates was appointed VP Corporate Operations of Fresh Healthy Vending’s newly formed Corporate Operations division. Nick will be responsible for placing healthy vending machines, which the company owns throughout San Diego and beyond, as well as developing operating partnerships with the companies Franchisees around the US.
Nick is the largest shareholder of Fresh Healthy Vending and sits on the companies board of directors.