Unmanned stores: An opportunity for HC system suppliers

Increasingly popular unmanned convenience stores present enticing opportunities for hydrocarbon cabinet system suppliers.

HoloBox showcased at ChinaShop 2017

In a sign of what’s to come for the future of retail, Holo General Equipment Co. Ltd. showcased its 24-hour unmanned fully automated convenience store concept at ChinaShop 2017.

Holo General Equipment Co. Ltd. is a Hong Kong-based commercial retail consultancy and equipment distributor.

The company has partnered with hydrocarbon system suppliers AHT and Husky to supply energy efficient, stand-alone showcases and plug-in freezers for unmanned convenience stores.

The systems were on display alongside the ‘HoloBox’ convenience store concept at this year’s ChinaShop event, held in Chongqing, China from 2-4 November.

Full automation

To enter the store, shoppers scan a QR code with their mobile phones. Once inside, the door automatically locks and the customer is left free to browse.

Should customers attempt to exit the store without paying for their products, an alarm sounds and a voice instructs them to return to the check-out machine to pay for their items.

Labels on each item allow the customer to go through a self-checkout process.

Customers pay for their items by scanning a QR code at the end of that process.

Once the customers have paid, they stand in front of the door, the automated system confirms their payment, and the door opens.

HoloBox employs the WeChat Pay platform, which is currently the dominant mobile payment service on the Chinese mainland.

The unmanned convenience store concept is currently one of the hottest trends in retail in China and is quickly gaining further popularity.

According to a recent report by China Daily, companies such as Bingo Box, Amazon Go, Lawson and Alibaba are also testing similar concepts in China’s largest cities such as Shanghai.

Watch a video of Holo’s demonstration here:

By Devin Yoshimoto

Nov 16, 2017, 11:04

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