Get Your Digital Drink on With Robot-Crafted Cocktails The future is now.
Entrepreneur: Barry Givens, owner of Monsieur, which produces robotic bartending machines for homes and businesses.
"Aha" moment: When Givens was a student at Georgia Institute of Technology, he and his roommate went to a bar to watch an NBA Finals game. Knowing the place would be packed, they arrived early, scored a table and ordered drinks. At halftime, about two hours later, their drinks finally arrived. The staff wasn't incompetent—just overwhelmed. The two mechanical engineering students conceived a machine that could make simple drinks so customers wouldn't have to wait for human bartenders.
Distilling the idea: After graduating in 2008, Givens worked as a mechanical designer for John Deere and then as a project manager at Caterpillar. That didn't last long. "I just didn't feel right in corporate [America], and I decided I wanted to go full-throttle in a bigger venture," he says.