Ahold Delhaize-owned supermarket chain Shop & Stop has announced plans to introduce driverless grocery vehicles in Boston, in the spring of this year.
The vehicles will offer a selection of Stop & Shop fresh produce, meal kits, and convenience items to customers so that they can shop at their doorsteps.
The project has been designed in association with a San Francisco-based startup, Robomart.
'Leveraging New Technology'
Stop & Shop president, Mark McGowan, said, “This is one way in which we’re leveraging new technology to make shopping easier for our customers – by essentially bringing the store to them.
“We also recognise that many of our customers want the opportunity to make their own choices when it comes to fresh produce, and we're proud to be the first retailer to engage with Robomart to address our customers’ needs with their cutting-edge solution,” McGowan added.
Stop & Shop customers in the Boston area can call a Robomart vehicle with the help of an app.
After the vehicle arrives, customers unlock the doors, and select fruit, vegetables, and other products they would like to purchase.
'Convenience and accessibility'
Robomart founder and CEO, Ali Ahmed, said, “For decades, consumers had the convenience of their local greengrocer and milkman coming door to door, and we believe that by leveraging driverless technology we can recreate that level of convenience and accessibility.”
The vehicle is equipped with RFID and computer vision technology that automatically records what customers select.
Receipts are emailed to customers seconds after the shopping is complete. The vehicle leaves once the doors are locked.
The vehicles used for this service are autonomous, electric, and will be remotely piloted from Robomart's facility.
These refrigerated vehicles will be re-stocked with fresh Stop & Shop goods to ensure customers are offered with the best selection.
© 2019 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Dayeeta Das. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.