Investors are betting $30 million that the company behind Amazon Go’s cashless retail technology has potential to create similar stores for a broad range of retailers.
At Amazon Go stores, shoppers walk into a store, grab items from the shelves, and walk out, while sensors subtract appropriate funds from their bank accounts via a smartphone app.
San Diego-based startup Accel Robotics is developing computer vision software, cameras, sensors and store equipment to accommodate the system. The company says it can build out an entire modular store for its customers, pre-loaded with the “checkout-free” experience.
Co-founder and CEO Brandon Maseda said Accel Robotics plans to create stores from scratch — and partner with existing retailers — to help bring small-format stores to such locations as university campuses, corporate offices and office parks, military bases, airports and other travel hubs.
“The idea is to deliver small, modular stores closer to where people live and work,” Maseda told The San Diego Union-Tribune. “To be frank, we’ve been focusing on building the world’s most convenient cashier-less store. If we get that right, then the rest will take care of itself.”
By Brannon Boswell