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Food+Tech Connect - A Great Success!

Updated: Oct 8, 2023

Ourglass Robotics held our very first successful press event together with Shin Minori at their Katong square outlet on 2 October 2019. A revolutionary dining experience with newly hired service robots, Loco and Loca, was introduced to over 30 media, influencers and guests. In conjunction with the event, Shin Minori served some of the newly added dishes to their existing Japanese buffet menu; totalling 223 items on the new menu.

Photo of William giving a presentation to the guests
William Dai, owner of Ourglass Robotics giving a presentation at Food+Tech Connect press event

Photo of the owner of Ourglass Robotics and guests
Over 30 media, influencers and guests turned up for Food+Tech Connect

The press event started with a presentation by William Dai, the owner of Ourglass Robotics. He shared about his goal of establishing the robotics company, how service robots are making a difference to the Food and Beverage industry and his vision for the company. William also shared about the deployment of Loco and Loca, from set up to implementation. Statistics like the number of food deliveries made and productivity growth rate over the last 1.5 months since the deployment of Loco and Loca.

After the presentation, guests were invited to the dining tables to be served by Loco and Loca. We have included the list of questions raised by the guests, and we believe it will help you to understand more about service robots Loco and Loca.

What are service robots (Loco and Loca) all about?

Shin Minori is the first Japanese restaurant in Singapore to hire service robots, Loco and Loca. And in fact, they are using the newest model of the Pudubot - the Pudubot Plus L - a Red Dot Award Designed product. Shin Minori’s vision is to redefine hospitality and change the way customers dine. Diners once seated can first view detailed food descriptions, food portioning and images of the dish item they are ordering via their existing e-Menu (electronic menu) placed on every table. And they will be served their dishes by Loco or Loca at lower waiting time and with more efficiency and accuracy. The aim of introducing Loco and Loca is to recreate a new dining experience for everyone!

Why hire service robots (Loco and Loca)?

"The idea of "hiring" service robots is to ease the labour crunch and at the same time, improve service quality and increase productivity. Being an ala-carte buffet restaurant with over 200 dishes on our menu, Servers often have to make countless trips from the kitchen to the diners' table. Ourglass Robotics has just the right robot to reshape and support our operations. What I like about the robots are the 4-tier trays that come in just the right size. Besides, the mapping and navigation of the tables are very accurate. Loco and Loca have definitely brought value to our business!" said Angeline Wong, the Founder of Shin Minori Japanese Restaurant.

Are the servers happy with their new colleagues?

Servers at Shin Minori are more thrill than worried about the addition of coworkers “Loco” and “Loca”. “During peak hours, we often have to rush through food deliveries. Loco and Loca have helped to reduce my workload by delivering food to the customers and even sending the empty plates back to the kitchen. Besides, we get more time to interact with the diners, understand their needs, and bring the dining experience to another level,” said Winnie, the Restaurant Manager of Shin Minori.

Robot waiter serving guests at the press event

Human waiter explaining to guests on the collection of dishes from the tray

Service robot saying "Excuse me, I need to send this order!"

What are the customers saying about the service robots?

"I have dined at Shin Minori UE Square outlet many years back, and the restaurant is always full and busy. It took a while for the food to come and the servers were rushing the food deliveries with the forever full trays. The quality of the food Shin Minori offers brought me back to the Katong Square outlet and I was really surprised to see the robots. Food deliveries by the service robots are speedy and the servers get to interact with us. I like it that the service robots are easy to deal with and this has "renewed" the dining experience I had with Shin Minori," said Miss Sim, a customer of Shin Minori.

Share with us more about the newly launched buffet menu!

On top of the deployment of the service robots, Shin Minori has launched a new ala-carte Japanese buffet menu. For S$49.90++ for lunch and dinner (Mon to Sun, Eve of PH & PH), diners can choose from more than 223-items. The restaurant welcomes families by offering the same menu to children less than 11 years of age at S$39.90++ for lunch and dinner. Best of all, children less than 5 years of age eat for free.

More photos and videos of the press event!

Photo and video by Qinlovesmacaronsss

Head down to Shin Minori at Katong Square (88 East Coast Road #02-08 Katong Square Singapore 423371) to enjoy the delectable spread of Japanese food served by Loco and Loca now! For media enquiries, please contact William at 9140 7235 or email

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