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03/04/2022

Mobile Smart Stores Launch With Retailers

Tortoise offers what it calls “world’s first robotic remote-controlled store-on-wheels”
Bridget Goldschmidt
Managing Editor
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Tortoise’s global expansion of Mobile Smart Stores, beginning with its launch customers, encompasses New York; Los Angeles; Chicago; London; Denver; Dallas; San Diego; Santa Cruz, Calif.; and South Carolina.

Tortoise’s Mobile Smart Store, which offers a 15-second frictionless tap-to-pay checkout experience on wheels, officially debuts today at the Curbivore conference, in Los Angeles, and is revealing its first 18 launch customers, including omnichannel retailer Choice Market, 2022 Progressive Grocer Outstanding Independent Edith’s Eatery & Grocery, Go Grocer, U.K. digital grocer Jiffy, delivery-only convenience store LuvMart, drive-thru Opie Stores, and Urban Value Corner Store.

Consumers just walk up to a Mobile Smart Store; tap to pay on the container lid, which then unlocks; take their box from inside; and go.

According to the company’s early results, Tortoise Mobile Smart Stores are generating $80-$100 in hourly sales – 25 times the hourly earnings of a traditional fixed vending machine.

While consumers purchase goods from the mobile stores, Tortoise remote teleoperators are monitoring transactions and playing responsive audio messages to ensure a smooth consumer experience. Mobile Smart Stores aim to help merchants boost sales and profits, with no added capital, infrastructure or staffing necessary. Tortoise provides the hardware and service at no upfront cost to merchants; the company’s only fee is keeping 10% of gross sales.  

An additional advantage of the Mobile Smart Stores is that it can travel places that other automated vehicles can’t, like inside local parks. Tortoise’s global expansion of Mobile Smart Stores, beginning with its launch customers, encompasses New York; Los Angeles; Chicago; London; Denver; Dallas; San Diego; Santa Cruz, Calif.; and South Carolina, with Missouri to come in the coming months.

In common with Santa Monica, Calif.-based Robomart, Tortoise is partnering with Miami-based REEF, the largest operator of mobility and logistics hubs and neighborhood kitchens in North America. 

Founded in 2019 by Dmitry Shevelenko and David Graham, Mountain View, Calif.-based Tortoise provides end-to-end automation solutions for retailers with their modular remote-controlled robotic platforms. Its flagship product is the Mobile Smart Store, a 15-second tap-to-pay mobile commerce solution that enables retailers to unlock meaningful incremental sales with no additional staffing or infrastructure. 

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