German retail group Metro has launched its new programme, powered by Techstars, which gives start-up companies an opportunity to develop digital applications for retailers.
The programme, 'Metro Accelerator for Retail', offers promising solutions for the retail sector, such as delivery robots, novel navigation technologies, smart sensors, and digital tools for avoiding food waste.
It is geared towards creating new technology for independent traders and retailers, as well as for Metro's hypermarket chain Real.
Nine start-ups from seven different countries have been selected for the first round of the programme, and will present their solutions to international investors on 5 September.
- Mio Mobile: delivery robot and navigation technology for autonomous distribution and delivery in the public space.
- Oriient: high-end indoor navigation solution controlled by the earth’s magnetic field and suited for direct implementation independently of any kind of infrastructure.
- Whole Surplus: food waste B2B solution for an optimised and fair distribution of excess food in the retail sector.
- Epinium: real-time evaluation of product prices and reviews for offline and online retailers as well as manufacturers.
- IamBot: product identification in a photo chat with direct links to multiple purchase options.
- JustSnap: gamification of discount campaigns via direct receipt analysis.
- Kptn Cook: curated recipes for the foodie community with direct links to the food retailer.
- Sensefinity: cloud-supported, self-learning sensors to track product and logistics data along the complete supply chain.
- Sensei: capture and analysis of offline retail data with the help of existing image data.
Andreas Wuerfel, director of global innovation community at Metro, said, "We believe that these promising startups offer precisely the solutions that offline traders and retailers need to grow in the digital world and meet their customers’ demands".
“The rapidly progressing digitisation of retail – including small independent traders and retailers – is a key topic for markets all over the world. With our Accelerator programme, we addressed this topic at the exact right time: several hundred startups from 24 countries worldwide applied for our programme. Metro, Real and Techstars are perceived as attractive experts and partners for startups."
For three months, the teams will receive ‘intensive support’ from over 100 retail specialists to build their business model, with up to €120,000 in funding.
Alexander Hafner, Techstars managing director for the Metro Accelerator programme, added, "Solutions from the fields of artificial intelligence, robotics and the Internet of Things represent the future for traditional offline retailers and also for multi-channel retail companies. With the Accelerator, we have attracted the most exciting startups in the market and are now preparing them for the investor market."
© 2017 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Aidan O’Sullivan. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine.