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… Retail Connect


C-star, Shanghai's International Trade Fair for Solutions and Trends all about Retail, took place from 25 to 27 April. One of the highlights for 2019 was the partnership with THE GRID. This networking hub aims to bring together the digital world – Internet companies, providers of disruptive technologies and start-ups in the field of digital transformation – with the physical world, i.e. with trade fairs and companies from these industries. The aim is to bring intelligent start-ups in the retail sector into business faster.

On April 22nd THE GRID invited to the Smart Retail Startup Challenge 2019. 11 young retail start-ups presented, under the guidance and moderation of Mr. Bruno Bensaid, Shanghaivest & Mobile Monday, their retail solutions. Not an easy job for the judges to nominate three of them for the final round. The jury consisting of Alvin Foo (Reprise Digital), Ashmit Bhattacharya (KargoCard), Susanna Chiu (East China for Li & Fung), Dominic Penaloza (WeWork China) and Alexis Richez (ZTP / Creadev) was impressed by the convincing and spirited ideas. Their decision was linked to those presentations that seemed to offer a realistic and suitable solution for the retail industry.

In the end they decided in favor of Addreality, Bevsight and Retail Connect. To emerge as the one winner the nominees had to present at the retail trade fair C-star on Friday, April 26th.

Customer loyalty and positive side-effects

In the final round, Retail Connect was the most convincing and emerged as the winner. Retail Connect is basically a loyalty-system for customers in shopping center – with positive side-effects beyond loyalty. Customer can scan the specifically tagged QR-code at their receipt and – while cloud computing is calculating the consumption – add loyalty-points after every purchase in real time. The data performance allows effective cross-store promotion and offers an accurate knowledge of store transaction which serves as the revenue-rent basis for the landlord of shopping malls.

Proudly Dr. Matthew Wang, Retail Connect, was honored with the award. He now has the opportunity to give a presentation at EuroShop.


Dr. Matthew Wang, Retail Connect (photo: Messe Düsseldorf Shanghai)

AI for more customer insights

Retail Connect prevailed over Addreality, an AI-based platform. Taken that even in China, where customers are comparatively very online-orientated, still over 80 % of shopping is offline, the idea is to get better customer insights. Addreality uses the analysis of instore-behavior to measure e.g. the effect of promotions. With cameras and face-recognition it dissects in real time instore audience recognition for example after an advertising campaign and will give the retailer better understanding of what attracts people’s attention.

Dmitry Shklyar, Addreality (photo: Messe Düsseldorf Shanghai)

Cloud-technology prevents out-of-stock!

Retail Connect also prevailed over Bevsight. Gastronomy becomes more and more attractive for retail as an integrated part of retail shops or in shopping center. Customers appreciate this extra service and retailers have thus the chance to extend the time being spent in their locations. Bevsight is an in-stock management solution for bars and restaurants and runs on every mobile device. To compare sales with inventory you take a photo of your items in stock. The software uses cloud-technology and creates graphs and analytics to give ab accurate calculation of inventory.

Damien Fenoli, Bevsight (photo: Messe Düsseldorf Shanghai)

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