Dozens of students and faculty members stood in line at the Pertusati Bookstore Monday morning for the grand opening of USC’s newest commodity, the Sprinkles Cupcake ATM.
Sprinkles is popular both within the L.A. community and nationwide for its handcrafted treats containing no preservatives, trans fat or artificial flavors. The company is also credited by the Los Angeles Times to have started the “haute cupcake craze.”
After several months of searching for local partnerships, USC Hospitality successfully procured an agreement with L.A.-based cupcake giant Sprinkles.
A myriad of USC Hospitality workers and media members gathered around at 10 a.m. to introduce the on-campus ATM machine. At the event, USC alum and former quarterback, Matt Leinart, had the honor to be the ATM’s first customer, and Genesis Gomez Tello, a first-year graduate at the USC School of Social Work, won an Instagram contest hosted by USC Hospitality to be the first student to purchase from the cupcake machine. Customers also had the opportunity to win one of the ten $100 gift cards to Sprinkles that were placed in random boxes in the ATM.
Open 24 hours, the new ATM machine will allow students to purchase Sprinkles cupcakes on campus at any time of the day. Holding up to 800 cupcakes, the dispensary boasts a large selection of flavors and options, including specialty cupcakes to accommodate dietary needs. The machine will also be regularly restocked from Sprinkles’ FIGat7th shop to ensure that the ATM is accessible at all times of the day.
Because of its popularity among college students, many at the University have expressed their support for the business.
“A lot of students and community members are going to come to USC for Sprinkles because it is a lot more accessible than going to Figat7th, The Americana or The Grove,” said Tello. “It’s just great knowing that we can just get a cupcake at our convenience.”
The partnership between the University and the bakery has satisfied students’ sweets cravings and has also supported USC Hospitality’s aims to provide fresh food products from local sources to the Trojan community. The company’s executive chef, Eric Ernest, states that Sprinkles cupcakes don’t contain any preservatives or fillers and are made from “chef-driven, transparent” recipes.
This is a significant move for the cupcake company as well. Though Sprinkles unveiled its first cupcake ATM in 2012, the USC Sprinkles ATM is the cupcake shop’s first standalone ATM, a vending machine that is not directly attached to a Sprinkles bakery.
“We thought we were pretty cool when we introduced the Burrito Box concept a few years ago — that was another first,” said Kris Klinger, assistant vice president of retail operations at USC Hospitality. “The Sprinkles Cupcake ATM will elevate our vending program to a whole new level. Based on initial feedback from the community, we expect it to be well received by those who want a sweet treat.”