Fully Autonomous Tesco Grocery Store in Central London
“We’re excited to bring this new technology to customers in London. This new proposition will save customers time, removing any friction from the checkout and offering even more convenience for shoppers. Working in partnership with Trigo, we have combined the range, quality and value of Tesco products with the latest in-store innovation and we can’t wait to see how customers respond.”
High Holborn Street is the highest point in the city of London and is situated in the centrally located Holborn neighbourhood. Holborn is within walking distance from some of London’s most famous neighbourhoods and attractions – the British Museum, London School of Economics, Royal Opera House, city of London, Covent Garden and the West End. But, it is also known in its own right as London’s legal quarter and the center for the UK’s jewelry and diamond industries.
Holborn has historically been a commercial district, a weekday and daytime hub for business and legal professionals; however, the last decade has transformed the area into a mix of residential and commercial with new housing developments, restaurants, shops and pubs. These developments have changed the fabric of the neighbourhood into a more posh and bustling area at night and on weekends, as well as one of central London’s most desirable areas to visit, work and live.
Opening a Second Store
Tesco’s Trigo-powered store on High Holborn street isn’t its first. Tesco’s initial store with Trigo was in Welwyn Garden City, Tesco’s headquarters, where new products and integrations were already being tested and evaluated. For the second store, Tesco chose, after careful consideration, to retrofit their High Holborn street location because of its size – a Tesco Express – the number of SKUs (2500 SKUs), and its central location with high traffic of young professionals and tech savvy individuals.
The High Holborn location will operate as an 100% autonomous store – meaning your journey from start to finish will be a completely seamless experience. Retrofitting the store included the hardware installation, as well as a carefully designed remote setup process, where Trigo’s solution is activated and the software is deployed on the hardware itself.
Guus Dekkers, Chief Technology Officer at Tesco, said about the store opening: “We’re excited to bring this new technology to customers in London. This new proposition will save customers time, removing any friction from the checkout and offering even more convenience for shoppers. Working in partnership with Trigo, we have combined the range, quality and value of Tesco products with the latest in-store innovation and we can’t wait to see how customers respond.”
Trigo’s operations and hardware specialists worked hand-in-hand with Tesco’s store management to ensure the successful meeting between the technology and the physical store. Together they made certain that there were no delays in reopening the store. This incredibly fast turnaround was exciting and showed promise for both Tesco and Trigo; it demonstrated the speed in which a store can be retrofitted, so that subsequent stores can be done in even less time and rapidly deliver seamless shopping to their customers.
Working with Tesco
Tesco has over 100 years of experience as a leader in the global grocery retail space and their unwavering commitment to innovation is what has kept them on top. Whether it was introducing the UK’s first health-centric food line in 1985 or being the first retailer to sell groceries online in 1996, Tesco has a long history of being trailblazers in grocery retail.
In 2018, Tesco heard about a group of deep tech, computer vision experts in Tel Aviv that were developing cashierless-checkout technology – something that they had to see for themselves. They were searching for visionaries who were ready to stretch boundaries, a company whose dedication to building the future of retail matched theirs, and a partner who can help them be amongst the pioneers in grocery retail to adopt and implement this technology at scale.
“For Tesco’s ambitious goals for grocery store innovation, Trigo was the obvious partner,” explains our COO and GM of our London office, Jenya Beilin. “Tesco and Trigo have a deep and long-term relationship, working to achieve scale and better serve their customers. Tesco believes in autonomous stores as a strategic solution that goes beyond one store, they offer a way to better serve all their customers and provide them with an improved experience.
“With Tesco, it goes beyond their absolute commitment to their customers and to innovation. It’s about the little things, the day-to-day tactics with regards to conversations and operations. They see things through, are on top of deliverables and are always thinking five steps ahead. Tesco works as a well-oiled machine, achieved from over a century of experience in the industry, always looking at the big picture to achieve their goals of scale and improving the customer experience.”