Artificial intelligence (AI) platform Everseen has raised $71 million to help retailers prevent theft.
The Irish company, whose computer vision technology can block theft at self-checkout stations, announced the Series A round, led by Crosspoint Capital, in a Thursday (May 11) press release, saying it would use the funds to scale the company.
“Everseen’s computer vision AI platform has scaled the automation of scene-based processes with impact,” founder and CEO Alan O’Herlihy said in the release, noting its platform is “in use across 6,000 major retail stores and connecting 80,000 point-of-sale devices.”
“We’re experiencing significant demand for our technology from retailers grappling with the dual impact of declining customer spending and rising operational losses, including shrinkage,” O’Herlihy said in an interview with TechCrunch.
“The retail industry is also facing challenges such as labor shortages and labor cost inflation, making our technology even more valuable in addressing these issues.”
Recent months have seen reports of cities taking steps to stem what they say is a rise in retail thefts, whether that meant stores in Los Angeles putting more items behind glass, or New York City’s mayor calling on retailers to have customers remove face masks to deter shoplifting.
The nationwide average for retail shrinkage in 2021 was 1.44% — comparable to the five-year average of 1.5% — though the NRF said organized retail theft jumped 26.5% during that year.
To help prevent theft, Everseen employs both ceiling-mounted cameras and computer vision software that it says can reduce theft at the point of sale for brick-and-mortar retailers.
O’Herlihy told the news outlet his company’s algorithms can detect and track objects such as SKUs and analyze how they interact, while also recognizing “actions of interest” carried out by employees and customers.
The company’s funding comes at a time when self-checkout continues to evolve. According to point-of-sale tech startup Grabango, self-checkout will eventually become autonomous, as PYMNTS wrote recently.
Andy Radlow, the company’s chief revenue officer, told PYMNTS that autonomous technology would eventually replace all other forms of checkout.
“Self-checkout has been around for over 20 years and has been a compromise … and that is of course increased shrink, increased theft. And there have been countermeasures employed — computer-vision-based countermeasures, Everseen, et cetera — but it’s still a healthy tension,” Radlow said. “Everybody at a secular level believes that the next generation of shopping is some form of checkout-free.”
Consumers, meanwhile, are hungry for more convenient shopping experiences, according to data in the February edition of PYMNTS’ Retail Tracker® series, Innovating the Retail Checkout Experience, created in collaboration with LS Retail.
That report found that 61% of consumers believe cashiers are more focused on scanning than on customer satisfaction, and 30% of shoppers think they are a burden to clerks if they bring too many items to the checkout.
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