After six months, Colruyt Group makes a first evaluation of its autonomous city store in Ghent. Expectations are met, the technology works. Okay Direct is especially popular when other shops are closed.
Fresh food and drinks
The fully automated store in Ghent’s Belfortstraat is – not entirely illogically – especially popular in the late evening and at night, when other stores are closed. Customers are positively surprised by the range of products on offer: the fresh products are particularly popular. Drinks are also sold well, says spokesperson Hanne Poppe to Het Nieuwsblad. According to her, the results are in line with expectations.
It is remarkable that no more items are stolen in the unmanned store than in stores with staff. There are people who try to get around the system, but Colruyt can keep track of the customers and deploys a security guard. Access to the store is only possible with the QR code of the Xtra loyalty card.
Colruyt Group opened the unmanned shop at the beginning of November, as a test project to estimate the potential of an unmanned city store concept. The technology was developed in-house. Customers can find about 650 sku’s in an area of 150 m². The focus of the offer is on meals, meat, fish, fruit and vegetables and bread, but also on essential products such as toilet paper and toothpaste.