Amazon Fresh cashierless rival Imagr eyes share in UK grocery market

Imagr, a New Zealand based tech startup, has vowed to take on Amazon Fresh and break into the UK grocery market after opening its first European office in Amsterdam.

The Amazon Fresh rival has already agreed deals with two European retailers and plans to roll out their autonomous checkout service in the UK later this year.

The startup, which markets itself as “an affordable solution for retailers”, is currently being trialled in Osaka by Japanese department chain H2O Retailing.

Imagr offers a similar service to Amazon Go’s no-checkout stores, which relies on AI-powered cameras to scan items as the customer drops them into their basket.

“Europe and the UK both have highly competitive grocery markets where outlets need to differentiate themselves from the pack or face losing market share,” Imagr chief executive William Chomley said.

“With Amazon Fresh recently entering the UK, with two stores already open, European grocery retailers are going to need to act fast to keep up with the changing landscape.”

Imagr, which names tech giant Toshiba amongst its backers, raised $9.5 million in a series of funding last year.

READ MORE: Amazon Fresh opens 2nd cashierless UK grocery store in as many weeks

“It’s thrilling to be backed by an international PoS leader like Toshiba Tec which owns 96 per cent of the convenience market in Japan,” Chomley added.

“Its support shows we have the right technology in place to change how retail shopping is done across the world”.

Toshiba Tec senior vice president Masami Uchiyama commented: “We looked globally for the most promising automated checkout provider and settled on Imagr as the most advanced technology of its kind.”

Imagr plan to upgrade their services later on this year with a larger trolley that boasts a more efficient battery to prolong cart life to a minimum of two years.

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