Convenience retailers address on-demand consumer needs for food and groceries, a EUR 1.5 trillion market in Europe. These retailers leverage the daily commute between home and work to locate stores at high footfall locations, such as inner cities, transit points, and gas stations. However, traditional offline stores are often inconvenient for shoppers and result in high operating costs for retailers.
AI Retailer Systems makes retail stores more attractive and convenient: The startup’s technology turns points of sale (POS) into 24/7 grab-and-go autonomous stores that enable ultra-convenient shopping without queues and self-scanning. In stores equipped with AI Retailer Systems’ platform, shoppers enter the store with an electronic payment method, such as a debit or credit card or mobile payment. Any item that the shopper takes will be added to the virtual shopping cart; any item put back on the shelf will be removed. With an always up-to-date cart, the shopper can leave the store without having to wait or scan anything at a checkout counter.
AI Retailer Systems’ technology is built with lean AI tech and can be easily installed and self-managed. This automation can prevent shoplifting and increase sales by more than 30% while decreasing the staff cost by up to 80%, offering retailers an economically viable model for the last mile. Additionally, the startup’s technology generates analytics that gives webshop-like capabilities to brick-and-mortar retailers to automate and optimize the entire value chain.
The ETH and HSG spin-off is based in Zurich and Bern and was founded by Alejandro Garcia (CEO) and Maran Pereirasamy (COO). The AI Retailer Systems team will use the Venture Kick funds to prepare its autonomous store platform and launch the first fully operational grab-and-go store in Switzerland with one of its customers.
“This journey with Venture Kick helped us to ensure we leave no untested assumptions in our business plan. Especially useful were the Kicker’s Camp sessions, making sure our value proposition for our customers stands out,” said Alejandro Garcia, AI Retailer Systems CEO. Maran Pereirasamy, the AI Retailer Systems COO, added: “This win proves that we are ready for a Seed financing round to accelerate further and have our platform ready to serve multiple large customers at launch. We will be intensifying investor-relation activities in the next weeks and months.”
(Press release / SK)