Since early November, there has been a new, fully automated supermarket in Fulda that represents the launch of a new sales format by organics pioneer and food retailer Tegut. The name Tegut … teo stands for a small automated shop with 50 square metres of sales area, open 24 hours a day. Customers gain access to the till-free shop by using an app or a debit or credit card, after which they can choose from a range of 950 products. Milk, cheese, sausage, meat, fruit, vegetables, chilled products and frozen foods feature among the selection, as do beverages, confectionery, tobacco items and alcoholic drinks. Household goods, cosmetics and personal-care products perfect the offering. Purchases can be scanned and paid for by card either with the teo app for smartphones or at one of the two self-checkouts. Thomas Stäb, Head of Sales Convenience/Branches, says that the prices are more aligned with those of normal supermarkets than those at petrol stations.
The compact building is 95% built from timber and features a partially green roof. The current branch, comprising four modules, also includes two “plug-in” offers: a book exchange shelf and a bicycle repair station. Amenities such as e-bike charging stations or parcel lockers are imaginable for other locations. With this concept, Tegut hopes to drive digital transformation for bricks-and-mortar retail too. Its plans include four to five more teo branches in the Fulda area by the middle of 2021; over the long term, the company is planning more than 300 at “vacant urban spaces” where there is no room for a regular Tegut supermarket. Tegut is convinced that the concept is the bricks-and-mortar answer to online shopping: “What I need. Where I need it. When I need it.”
A grocery shop that has opened in Düsseldorf’s Medienhafen is pursuing a similarly innovative concept. Customers can shop for their groceries contact-free in the first branch of digital supermarket TYPY. Orders are placed either on the go with an app or directly at the shop’s order terminal. After that, a robot gathers all the chosen products within a few seconds and carries them to the pick-up terminal. Day-to-day foods and cosmetics are sold along with bowls of food, smoothies, salads and fresh coffee. Roughly 750 products are available to choose from. The fully automated branches make smart use of storage space and are intended to provide a quick, flexible and pleasant shopping experience in very small spaces.
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