New retail partnership seeks to help reduce store theft
Retail communications specialist, VoCoVo, and machine intelligence expert, SHELFIE, have formed a new partnership to tackle the rising problem of retail shrinkage.
The partnership will see VoCoVo’s voice communication technology integrate with SHELFIE’s autonomous high-frequency computer vision technology to provide retail staff with early warnings on product loss from shoplifting and employee theft, allowing early intervention.
The system works by using SHELFIE’s technology to continually audit and track stock levels on store shelves. Deep learning algorithms can identify any instances where stock depletes outside of established shopping behaviour, triggering a real-time alert to the VoCoVo system. VoCoVo, who’s customers include Tesco and Selco, translates this trigger into a discreet audio alert sent to store security staff via VoCoVo headsets, detailing where the shrinkage is likely to be occurring and intervention may be required.
Chris McKie, Head of Product at VoCoVo, explains: “Knowledge is power. We’ve combined the latest advances in digital communication and computer vision to provide retailers with a solution that will play a critical part in combatting theft, an issue which has impacted the industry for too long.”
UK retailers have the highest shrinkage in Europe, costing retailers £11bn annually according to the Retail Security in Europe report. VoCoVo’s own research also shows that over a third of UK retail workers (38%) have experienced store theft since the pandemic began. The collaboration brings many efficiency benefits with some of Europe’s largest retailers already using it to actively and progressively manage potential shrinkage cases.
Yehia Oweiss, Vice President of EMEA at SHELFIE, adds: “It’s simply another instance where our automation liberates retail staff to serve customers. No one at these retail stores is constrained to watching tedious CCTV footage in some dark room. Instead, staff can help shoppers in the isles while SHELFIE’s algorithms precisely monitor suspicious behaviour. Where shrinkage may be occurring – staff are informed automatically to take action via their VoCoVo headset.”
Established in 2016, VoCoVo enables businesses to release the power of voice. Currently used by 30 tier 1 global retailers and active in 6,000 stores with 83,000 users, VoCoVo’s solutions drive actionable insights that empower retailers to improve employee communication and make better decisions that enhance customer experience and drive profitability.
Based in the Cotswolds, VoCoVo is growing fast with customers across the UK, Europe, Australia, Canada and America. In 2019 the company became a winner of the Deloitte Technology Fast 50 Award and a finalist in the Santander Growing Business of the Year Award.
SHELFIE is part of Lakeba Group’s MachineIQ portfolio of ventures, dedicated to eliminating frictions from business operations through enhanced machine intelligence. SHELFIE’s deep learning technology automates audits and insights from shelves in physical retail environments. The system consists of an analytics platform, image capturing devices and reporting dashboards. Launched in 2016, SHELFIE’s technology is used by the world’s leading retailers in Asia, Europe, Middle East, North America and Oceania.
About Lakeba Group
Lakeba Group is a privately held venture builder. It commercialises technology into ventures that eliminate the frictions caused by analogue transactions across retail, finance, property and technology. Engaging the intelligence of the masses, the global capacity and distribution of its partners, and its team’s proven skill and experience to convert industry needs into commercially successful businesses. Since its launch in 2013, Lakeba Group has conceived, created and commercialised 17 ventures.