This week in Retail & Consumer Goods: Retailers leverage AI & AR/VR to prioritize e-commerce as in-store traffic plummets

This week in Retail & Consumer Goods: Retailers leverage AI & AR/VR to prioritize e-commerce as in-store traffic plummets

Latest Industry Insights from Draup Braindesk

Service providers like IBM, SAS, and Blue Yonder are developing autonomous supply chain solutions to reduce wastage & increase operational efficiency 

  • Starbucks collaborated with ‘Microsoft’ to use blockchain technology to improve the visibility of its supply chain and track its coffee journey, which will be showcased to the end consumers 
  • C.H. Robinson and SAS collaborated to design an end-to-end supply chain solution that integrates inventory & demand data with transportation data to address real-time challenges in demand planning & shipping execution
  • Sainsbury and BlueYonder partnered to deploy an autonomous self-learning supply chain platform with ML capabilities and cover a range of services such as demand forecasting, digital control tower, and warehouse management  

Organizations are leveraging AI and IoT to enable contactless delivery and reliability
  • Snapdeal collaborated to enable contactless delivery using AI-enabled robots that leverage autonomous navigation & routing systems to run along street walks & local streets  
  • Microsoft powered ‘NCR Digital Connected Services’ to enable IoT product monitoring for retailers on Azure platform leveraging AI & IoT for insight generations & increased system reliability  
  • IBM developed ‘IBM Sterling Inventory Control Tower’ that leverages AI to generate insights from the inventory, assess any disruption, and develops the required solution for a resilient supply chain   

Key players expand their e-commerce offering in various areas to complement their exceptional in-store experience 
  • Farm Boy launched Danavation’s Digital Smart Labels technology which provides the ability to update product and pricing information on-demand while standardizing store signage, avoids costly mispricing errors, and streamlining labor processes  
  • Albertson introduced an in-store eCommerce fulfillment System that will use artificial intelligence-enabled technology to read grocery orders made online, collect the items, and deliver to an Albertsons employee via a system of totes and conveyors.  
  • Voila partnered with Oliver & Bonacini Hospitality, enabling the customer to order a curated selection of O&B’s popular dishes through Voilà by Sobeys, a cutting-edge online grocery home delivery service. 

Latest Reports Published in Draup

CPG Landscape and Trends – March 2021: Consumer-packaged-goods (CPG) industry market is valued at USD 193.8 Bn in 2020 and is expected to grow USD 231.3 Bn in 2026 with a CAGR growth rate of 2.99%. Emerging countries in Asia, including China, India, and Indonesia, currently has a significant share of growth in the global CPG market. 
Read More>>
The Clorox Company Account Intelligence Report – May 2021: The Clorox Company developed a frictionless online shopping experience for consumers at each stage of the purchase process, from search to delivery. This growth only accelerated as COVID-19 prompted more consumers to purchase products online, and as a result, e-commerce accounted for 12% of total company sales in FY20 compared to 8% in FY19. Read More>>

Key Funding Alert

B2B retail platform 6Degree raises USD 1 Mn in funding 
The seven-year-old startup provides a software platform, Honeycomb, to fashion and lifestyle brands, helping them publish and manage inventory, track and manage orders, and boost sales online. According to the company, the fundraise will help the company to ramp up operations for its flagship product software platform, Honeycomb. 
Read More>>

Startup Spotlight

Company – Shelf Engine
HQ Location – Greater Seattle Area, US 
Total Funding – USD 17.22 Mn
About: Shelf Engine is a provider of an automated prediction engine that recommends what to order every day. It is transforming the food supply chain by helping grocery stores increase profit margins while drastically reducing food and beverage waste. Using machine learning, Shelf Engine forecasts demand for highly perishable foods, reducing waste and out-of-stocks. Read More>>

Key Insights and Signals in Draup

Mergers and Acquisitions
Competition Commission of India approves Imola-Ingram Micro deal     
Under the deal, Platinum Equity Group — through Imola, a wholly-owned affiliate of certain entities that the group ultimately controls — would acquire sole control of Ingram Micro by way of a merger of subsidiaries, as per a notice filed with the watchdog. Read More>>
Walmart buys MeMD to provide virtual healthcare nationwide
The retailer has acquired telehealth provider MeMD to offer virtual healthcare across the US, including urgent and behavioral care, on top of the usual primary services. The new offering will serve as a complement to Walmart Health’s in-person help. The buyout could help in a pandemic-struck era when Walmart customers might not be comfortable with in-person healthcare. Read More>>
Panasonic buying supply chain software provider for USD 7.1 Bn     
Blue Yonder is a software-as-as-system provider and consultancy offering end-to-end supply chain and commerce solutions. Panasonic acquired a 20% stake in Blue Yonder in July 2020 and is acquiring the remaining 80% in a deal that values Blue Yonder at USD 8.5 Bn. Read More>>
CCI approves acquisition of Alibaba-backed BigBasket by Tata Sons
The Tata-BigBasket deal has put the conglomerate in direct competition with Amazon and Walmart’s Flipkart. In the filing with the CCI, Tata Digital Ltd., a wholly-owned unit of Tata Sons, had proposed to buy 64.3% of an entity that runs business-to-business sales for BigBasket. Read More>>
Tile counts on Amazon partnership to rival Apple’s AirTags     
California-based startup Tile is relying on a partnership with Inc. to rival Apple Inc.s AirTags. Amazon said that Tile, a service that locates misplaced items using Bluetooth technology, will join Amazon Sidewalk beginning June 14. Amazon Sidewalk is Amazon’s Bluetooth network that helps to improve the connectivity of devices like the Ring and Amazon Echo. Read More>>
Amazon Payment Services partners with Zurich International Life Limited to launch digital payments for customers in the Middle East
Through the services provided by Amazon Payments Services, Zurich’s customers can now digitally pay insurance premiums across all products in local currencies without incurring conversion fees with the highest levels of customer data security. Read More>>
McAfee and Ingram Micro simplify cloud security 
Now, Ingram Micro channel partners can offer proactive cloud-delivered security solutions for an organization’s entire hybrid IT environment, including comprehensive and unified endpoint security across the entire attack lifecycle, Secure Access Service Edge (SASE), and integrated Cloud-Native Application Protection Platform (CNAPP) security. Read More>>
Zicam selects Hanwha Techwin as their preferred provider of IP Network video surveillance solutions  
As a Gold level Hanwha Techwin STEP Partner, Zicam Integrated Security is able to benefit from the support offered by the partnership program, including an enhanced 5-year warranty, access to a wide range of technical support resources, lead sharing and co-marketing activities. Read More>>
Ingram Micro jumps on RPA opportunity with UiPath 
Ingram Micro is strengthening its robotic process automation (RPA) offerings via a new partnership with UiPath. The distributor says its Advanced Solutions portfolio offering artificial intelligence (AI) and RPA solutions is one of its fastest-growing practices. Read More>>
Executive Movement
The Coca-Cola Foundation names Saadia Madsbjerg as president     
Madsbjerg will also serve as the company’s vice president of Global Community Affairs. In her new job with the Coca-Cola Co., Madsbjerg will manage operations of the Foundation, which includes grantmaking, financial requirements, and regulatory compliance for domestic and international philanthropy. Read More>>
Best Buy President and COO stepping down in July     
Best Buy said that its president and the chief operating officer are stepping down in July after more than 17 years with the chain. The Richfield-based consumer electronics retailer will not replace Mike Mohan, 53. Instead, his duties will be spread out among members of the executive team. Read More>>
The new Board of Directors of Safilo Group S.p.A. confirms Angelo Trocchia as CEO and appoints the committees 
The new Board of Directors confirmed Angelo Trocchia as Chief Executive Officer. The Board of Directors finally appointed the Control and Risk Committee members, the Sustainability Committee, the Remuneration and Nomination Committee, and the Transactions with Related Parties Committee. Read More>>
Albertsons hires Danielle Crop as Chief Data Officer    
Albertsons Companies Inc. announced that Danielle Crop had joined the company as Senior Vice President and Chief Data Officer. Crop was most recently Chief Data Officer at American Express. Throughout Crop’s 15 years at American Express, she was at the forefront of the company’s data science efforts. Read More>>
Center setup and expansion
Amazon to open first fulfillment center in Savannah
According to a statement from the governor’s office, the 640,000-square-foot facility, which is scheduled to open next year, will contain Amazons robotics technology and create 1,000 full-time jobs. The facility will support the order fulfillment of smaller items like books, toys, and small household goods, the statement said. Read More>>
Lululemon sets up first India technology hub     
Vancouver, Canada-based sports apparel company Lululemon Athletica has launched a technology hub in Bengaluru as part of its India expansion plans. The first such center outside North America, the India hub, is expected to be operational by August 2021, a statement said. The company will hire nearly 250 technologists for the hub by the end of 2022, a statement said. Read More>>
Aldi files trademark for potential new checkout-free store format
Aldi could potentially be looking at opening a checkout-free store after trademarking Shop & Go with the Intellectual Property Office. Aldi’s trademarking of Shop & Go was linked to new technology investments, including a new store with self-scanning handsets for customers or no checkouts. Read More>>
Woolworths announces plan to build first automated fulfillment center    
Australian supermarket giant Woolworths has announced plans to build its first automated fulfillment center to speed up home delivery orders. Subject to state government approval, the plans will see Woolworths construct a 22,000-square meter center in Sydney’s west at Auburn. Read More>>
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