Fujitsu to distribute Zippin's AI-based checkout-free solution exclusively in Japan
Fujitsu Limited and Zippin today announced a new partnership that names Fujitsu as an exclusive distributor of Zippin's checkout-free solution in Japan. Fujitsu is Zippin's first exclusive distributor in any market and will start offering Zippin's checkout-free solution by March 2021, with the aim of creating a new AI smart store business for the micro market. In the future, the partners will further strengthen their cooperation and consider expansion in geographies outside Japan. The agreement was concluded after a successful field trial Fujitsu and Zippin conducted with the Lawson convenience store chain in Japan earlier this year. View the demo video here.
The partnership enables Fujitsu to build a new retail solution to deliver a new customer experience by September 2021, leveraging Zippin's checkout-free SaaS platform, with a focus on cashier-free, cashless operations to save staff time and increase their bandwidth – of particular importance during the pandemic. Features may include identity verification with multi-biometric authentication. The combined technological expertise of Fujitsu and Zippin will accelerate the digital transformation of any retail store.
There is growing demand for new purchasing experiences and service styles in retail stores as retailers navigate the increasing pervasiveness of cashless transactions, address labor shortages, and embrace a "new normal" that demands safety for essential workers and shoppers during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Through this collaboration, Fujitsu and Zippin will accelerate retail digital transformation in-store and provide innovative services to consumers by leveraging Fujitsu's strong customer base and integration. The combination of digital technologies, such as multi-biometric authentication developed by Fujitsu Laboratories Ltd. and Zippin's global experience in implementing AI-based checkout-free solutions, will be a powerful offering for the Japanese market.
This partnership helps to cement Zippin's position as a global leader in the provision of checkout-free technologies. Its solution is one of the most effective available, taking into account consumer behavior and combining both cameras and sensors to track the movement of products in-store.
Under this agreement, Fujitsu will start providing Zippin's checkout-free solution, either directly or through local partners to the Japanese market. Fujitsu will also develop a solution to deliver a new buying experience, including a personalized service for consumers, and a managed service to accelerate the retail business globally, available as SaaS in the market by September 2021. Leveraging this solution, Fujitsu will support the retail industry, in which real engagement with customers remains an important factor, to increase customer satisfaction and create a new retail business model to improve profitability by providing queue-less, frictionless, wallet-less and even smart device-less purchasing experience.
Comments from Partners
"We are committed to providing new value to the retail industry and are thrilled to have Zippin's advanced technology and expertise powering our solution," said Hirohisa Yamaguchi, Corporate Executive Officer and Head of Finance & Retail Solution Business Group of Fujitsu. "We will continue to proactively partner with best-in-class startup companies in order to accelerate digital transformation for not only Japan, but for the global retail industry."
"We are tremendously excited about our partnership with Fujitsu," said Krishna Motukuri, co-founder and CEO of Zippin. "Zippin's technology has attracted a lot of attention from US, European, Asian companies. We chose Fujitsu as our reseller partner because they are a highly trusted general ICT vendor and we are confident that Fujitsu will drive the market forward in Japan."
"Since February 2020, Fujitsu and Zippin have been participating in POC conducted by Lawson, Inc.. Based on the results of the POC, Lawson has been working with the two parties to identify business and technical issues. With this POC, we are confident with its potential and are looking forward to greatly expanding our partnership with them," said Kunitsugu Makino, Deputy Senior Vice President, General Manager, Open Innovation Center of Lawson. "In today's rapidly changing environment, a checkout-free store that can eliminate face-to-face payment, well reflects the needs of the recent situation. We expect the collaboration of Fujitsu and Zippin will infuse new breath into the retail industry."
Zippin has developed the next generation of checkout-free technology enabling retailers to quickly deploy frictionless shopping in their stores. Our patent-pending approach uses AI, machine learning and sensor fusion technology to create the best consumer experience: banishing checkout lines and self-scanners for good, and letting shoppers zip in and out with their purchases. Zippin's platform leverages product and shopper tracking through overhead cameras, as well as smart shelf sensors, for the highest level of accuracy even in crowded stores. Founded by industry veterans from Amazon and SRI with deep backgrounds in retail technology, AI and computer vision, Zippin is headquartered in San Francisco and backed by Evolv Ventures (Kraft-Heinz), NTT Docomo, Nomura Research Institute, SAP, Maven Ventures, and Core Ventures Group.