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06/06/2022

Alimentation Couche-Tard Bringing Smart Checkout to Circle K

System will be deployed at 7,000+ convenience locations
Emily Crowe
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Circle K
Mashgin's "Smart Checkout" will help Circle K and Couche-Tard customers check out in as little as 10 seconds.

Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. is about to make checkout a lot easier at many of its Circle K and Couche-Tard stores. The convenience retailer is partnering with Mashgin Touchless Checkout Systems to bring artificial intelligence-based checkout to more than 7,000 locations over the next three years. 

The checkout system is a compact device that can be easily retrofitted into existing store layouts and uses computer vision to seamlessly recognize products. Customers simply place their items on a designated space and several cameras are utilized to help ring up everything in under a second.

The technology has already been deployed across nearly 500 Circle K locations in the U.S. and Sweden over the past two years, and according to Mashgin, it will improve customer checkout times as much as 400%. 

“Mashgin’s core technology represents a major breakthrough in the world of artificial intelligence. By reinforcing computer vision models with three-dimensional data, we are able to reach 99.9% accuracy when ringing items,” said Mukul Dhankar, chief technology officer and co-founder of Palo Alto, Calif.-based Mashgin. “This innovation also allows the system to easily differentiate between different sizes of items with a similar appearance, and also makes it flexible enough to recognize grab-and-go foods like pizza or roller grill items that may look slightly different each time. Another key component to our technology is its ability to learn new objects in less than a minute and sync that data across stores, making it possible to set up a new store in under an hour.”

“We’re committed to investing in and scaling technology that sets a new standard for convenience with our customers and advances our mission to make our customers’ lives a little easier every day,” said Magnus Tägtström, VP of global innovation at Couche-Tard. “The Smart Checkout system powered by Mashgin’s game-changing technology shortens lines, improves the customer experience and frees up our teams to focus on helping our customers. We look forward to introducing this new platform to stores across our network.”

Some 80% of users at Circle K locations where the system has already been rolled out say they prefer the new checkout over its traditional counterpart. Mashgin says updates to the system also now allow the use of cash, fuel purchases and loyalty program use. 

Alimentation Couche-Tard is a global leader in convenience and fuel retail, and operates in 26 countries and territories. The company is home to Couche-Tard and Circle K banners and has more than 14,100 stores. It is No. 18 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2022 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America.

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