In-store robots are on their way to almost 500 Giant/Martin’s and Stop & Shop stores, thanks to a partnership between Ahold Delhaize USA’s Retail Business Services division and Nicholasville, Ky.-based Badger Technologies, a product division of Jabil. The move follows successful pilots at the two banners that resulted in improved in-store efficiencies and safety.
“As part of our continued focus on technology transformation, we’re pleased to support one of the most significant deployments of robotics innovation in the grocery retail industry,” noted Paul Scorza, EVP and CIO for Salisbury, N.C.-based Retail Business Services. “Several companies in the grocery retail space have recently begun testing or using in-store robots – something Retail Business Services and the local brands we serve have been doing for some time. We’re pleased to support the Giant/Martin’s and Stop & Shop brands as they now lead the industry from test to large-scale usage of robots and to see the benefits the technology continues to drive for their businesses.”
For the pilots, the robot model, dubbed Marty, was deployed in stores to identify hazards such as liquid, powder and bulk food-item spills, and to report them so they could be cleaned up. The robots helped stores mitigate the risk caused by such spills, as well as enabling store associates to spend more time serving and interacting with customers.
“We are excited to be part of this industry-leading rollout of fully autonomous robots that collect safety data while traversing retail stores,” said Frederic McCoy, SVP at St. Petersburg, Fla.-based Jabil Retail. “Real-time hazard alerts empower stores to resolve incidents like spills, as well as improve operations.”
The rollout of robots at Giant/Martin’s and Stop & Shop is currently underway and will continue through early 2019, while other Ahold Delhaize USA banners continue to test autonomous robots in select locations.
Retail Business Services, the services company of Ahold Delhaize USA, provides services to six East Coast grocery banners – Food Lion, Giant Food, Giant/Martin’s, Hannaford, and Stop & Shop – as well as e-grocer Peapod. The company’s services include information technology, merchandising and marketing services, private-brand products, pharmacy services, sourcing, not for resale, store services, financial services, legal services, communications, supply chain, and people systems and services. Ahold Delhaize USA is No. 4 on Progressive Grocer’s 2018 Super 50 list of the top grocers in the United States.