Qatar-Based Retailer Al Meera Partners With Zippin for Checkout-Free Stores

Al Meera, autonomous, checkout, Zippin

The Al Meera Consumer Goods Company announced Sunday (Aug. 21) that it has partnered with checkout-free tech firm Zippin to expand its business and bolster its customer service offerings.

Al Meera, which is based in Qatar, will soon roll out fully-autonomous stores in various locations to provide visitors with “essential items” like snacks, beverages and grab-and-go items, according to the press release.

The stores will reportedly be located in “attractive” locations that need a convenient market for people to buy drinks or snacks. They’ll operate through cameras and sensors that track customers through their in-store journey, streamlining the shopping and checkout experience.

Through the cameras, stores will automatically identify what items were picked up or put back, creating a virtual cart for the shoppers to help cut down on time spent in-store. Al Meera said this was part of its customer service strategy, noting that it wasn’t the last thing it intended to do.

“In addition, it is in line with the country’s strategy to achieve digital transformation, using modern technology solutions to promote cashless payment solutions and facilitate economic growth in accordance with Qatar National Vision 2030,” the company said in its release. “These stores will enable our customers to quickly grab their drinks and snacks, and complete their transactions seamlessly.

“We continuously strive to keep pace with the growing demands of customers in a digital-dominated era.”

There have been other innovations in checkout as of late, with saying earlier in the month that it’d be boosting its authentication product. This comes as checkout friction has been a popular topic as of late, with more players in the sector working to cut fraud while boosting sales.

See also: Adapting Authentication to a ‘Buy’ Button World is looking to help merchants navigate the strong customer authentication (SCA) requirements under the EU’s Revised Payment Service Directive (PSD2). While those things don’t apply to U.S. businesses directly, operators have been looking at SCA because of its more stringent authentication requirements.

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