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Is This Autonomous Micro-Store the Future of Convenience?

Juxta Nomad concept is set to roll out in Colorado and Georgia
Emily Crowe, Progressive Grocer
JUXTA Nomad interior
The fully autonomous Juxta Nomad micro-store can hold between 500 and 600 products.

Global technology and micro-convenience startup Juxta is bringing its targeted retail concept to the United States with autonomous, portable and unstaffed Nomad micro-stores. The concept debuted at the Renewal 2023 music festival in Buena Vista, Colo., this summer, and more stores are set to be rolled out in several states. 

While the Juxta Nomad is designed primarily to support operators of electric vehicle (EV) charging stations, the flexible, turnkey retail offering can also provide opportunities for other retail situations. According to Om Shankar, co-founder of Raleigh, N.C.-based Juxta, Nomad offers real-time data that enables operators to optimize their retail strategy and precision-target their customers by stocking high-demand items to reduce waste and maximize efficiency and profitability.

[Read more: "Laying the Operational Foundation for Autonomous Stores"]

The 264-square-foot Nomad interior houses state-of-the-art shelving and presentation units and can hold between 500 and 600 products. Shelf and cabinet sensors detect when an item is picked up, and an array of cameras anonymously identify by whom. The information is combined in the cloud to create a digital basket for each customer. 

Customers can verify their purchased items on a large touchscreen before they exit the store, or they can simply exit the store and have their credit or debit card charged as appropriate.

As for the music festival where the Nomad debuted, its ability to travel and cater to high-demand yet remote locations was on full display as it served concertgoers 24 hours a day during the event. That rollout occurred in partnership with Colorado-based Choice Market, and the first Choice Market Nomad micro-store is slated to open in the retailer’s hometown of Denver.

“To be signing retail partners and fielding enquiries from some of the largest EV [original equipment manufacturers] in the world is validation of Juxta’s vision for the Nomad solution,” said Shankar. “Our proprietary technology and store format combination, working in partnership with renowned brands, has the power to redefine the industry.”

Continued Shankar: “Our solution mitigates multitude challenges in the retail segment, from real estate cost and utilization, squeezed profit margins, access to 24-hour service, labor shortages and staffing issues, including instant, simple and contactless pay, and quick setup, in any location, no matter how remote. The Nomad offers an all-around seamless solution to these challenges, and at the same time, we believe it to be the most profitable-per-square-foot convenience retail format in the world.”

Juxta has also established a partnership with Watkinsville, Ga.-based Golden Pantry Food Stores. The food retailer’s first Nomad store will open in Wire Park, a mixed-use development with apartments, offices, restaurants and an events space housed in a repurposed factory. 

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