back to top

    Unmanned Żabka Nano conquers European markets

    Żabka Group is now the largest chain of autonomous stores in Europe – it has launched 25 stores supported by artificial intelligence, called Żabka Nano. The innovative concept, which allows for quick shopping without cashiers, queues, and cash, is precisely tailored to the nature of the location and customer profile. The stores operate in several formats, such as stand-alone containerized vending machines, traditional brick-and-mortar outlets, and store-in-the-store. Each uses technology developed in close collaboration with American technology company AiFi.

    Thanks to the skillful use of the latest technologies, the Żabka Group has become the fastest-growing grocery chain in Europe – in 2021, it opened 1,100 stores, reaching a total of more than 7,900 traditional outlets. It created and perfected its autonomous concept in cooperation with AiFi, Żabka Group created Żabka Nano and opened its first autonomous store in June 2021 in Poznań.


    “Żabka is a European leader in creating modern convenience solutions that meet the needs of today’s customers. We focus on providing unique and highly personalized shopping experiences by connecting the digital world with the surroundings. We want to redefine the speed of shopping. In 2021, we opened 25 Żabka Nano autonomous outlets. However, we do not stop there. In the first quarter of this year, we will launch another dozen or so,” says Tomasz Suchański, CEO of the Żabka Group.


    Żabka Nano outlets are already being tested by customers in 25 locations in 6 cities across the country. They can be used by customers in Gdańsk, Kraków, Piaseczno, Poznań, Sopot and Warsaw. They operate in a wide variety of locations, including city centers, train and subway stations, universities, and large-format stores.


    “We are constantly working on developing and improving the globally unique concept that is Żabka Nano. We focus on its flexibility. We can open new autonomous outlets both in high-traffic locations such as city centers or subway stations and in large-format stores. As one of the first in the world, we are also developing a concept that makes it possible to enter a store using a payment card,” says Tomasz Blicharski, Managing Director of Żabka Future.


    Since the launch of the first Żabka Nano store, interest in the concept has been growing. Several thousand people have already taken advantage of the possibility to do fast and convenient shopping in Żabka’s autonomous stores. And the high NPS (net promoter score) – above 80 – confirms that the project is responding very well to customer expectations.


    Żabka Nano uses innovative methods of authorization and payment for shopping. The first outlets were linked to the chain’s mobile app, which allowed people to both walk in and pay for their purchases. Currently, a store-in-the-store model is being developed with a concept that allows entry to the outlet using any payment card. The shopping itself only takes a moment, and payment is processed automatically.


    Used in all stores, the innovative AiFi platform is a camera-based solution that uses computer vision and machine learning to recognize products taken off the shelves and automatically finalizes payment upon exiting the store. The system does not identify customers and does not memorize images, which guarantees complete privacy and security.


    “The 25 stores, launched with Żabka in six months, demonstrate AiFi’s customer-centric values of understanding customers’ needs and building flexible solutions. We are looking forward to further strengthening our cooperation with Żabka. With the development of more Żabka Nano stores powered by our technology, we will revolutionize shopping,” says Steve Gu, CEO, and co-founder of AiFi.


    The range of products in Żabka Nano stores is adapted to the specifics of the location and customer profile. Depending on the model, it ranges from 450 to as many as 1,500 products. Each Żabka Nano features Żabka’s brand products, including nutritious and healthy snacks, juices and smoothies, ready-made meals, and freshly ground coffee from the coffee machine.


    Żabka’s autonomous outlets are created as part of the Żabka Future Business Incubator, which combines three elements: managing and finding innovations, turning them into new products and services, and commercializing them. The project is also perfectly in line with the strategy of the Żabka Group, which assumes implementation of actions aimed at maintaining climate neutrality – Żabka Nano uses only the equivalent of green energy for its operations.

    More in section