Smith Vending Canteen

Our History

Quality Products at Fair Prices

From 1976 to today, Smith Vending Canteen continues offering a Quality Product at a Fair Price.

Smith Vending Company was started in 1976 by Lyle Smith in Hiawatha, Kansas. Lyle grew his business gradually by acquiring new customer business by offering a Quality Product at a Fair Price.

A few years later his brother, Don Smith, joined him and with a Tom’s Foods Franchise they quickly grew their business into several routes covering Northeast Kansas, Southeast Nebraska, and Northeast Missouri.

During the 80’s, the business declined and Don left the business. In 1988, Rod Nester was hired by Lyle to replace his four part time employees and to run all the routes. In 1989, they began to aggressively expand the vending portion of the business. In the fall of 1989, they expanded into Maryville and the new division was created.

Rod moved his family to Maryville, MO and then just a year later moved them into Clarinda, Iowa, where the “Iowa Division” was established.

Throughout the 90’s, six routes were established, a new warehouse was erected, a commissary was built, and by 1995 over 60% of the Smith Vending business was conducted from the Iowa Division.

After 20 years of developing, operating, and managing Lyle’s Iowa Division, Rod purchased it from him on January 1, 2008. Thus the creation of Smith Vending Corporation. In October of 2008, Bob Andrews with Canteen Franchise Group approached Rod about becoming a Canteen Franchise. On January 1, 2009, we became a Canteen Franchise.

In 2011, Ashilyn completed her Bachelor’s Degree at NWMSU and joined the company full time.

In 2021, Rod retired and Ashilyn became the owner and CEO of SVC. Ashilyn continues to own and operate the operations in Clarinda, Denison, and Ottumwa today and practices the Smith Vending vision of Quality Products, Fair Prices, with Excellent Service.

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