Ocado Group and The Kroger Family of Companies (“Kroger”) have announced the continued expansion of their partnership, with plans to construct a new high tech customer fulfilment centre in the south region of the USA, alongside a planned roll out of Ocado’s in-store fulfilment (ISF) software across Kroger stores, beginning in 2021.
The new facility will measure 200,000 sq ft. The exact location and construction dates of the new facility will be announced soon.
Luke Jensen, CEO of Ocado Solutions said, “Grocery ecommerce has reached a critical trajectory in 2020. More consumers are shopping for food online than ever before, and the USA has seen a rapid, sustained expansion of the channel.”
“In the long term, we know that winning online in grocery means having the best customer service, underpinned by the best operational economics,” said Jensen. “In leveraging the wide range of Ocado fulfilment technologies, Kroger is accessing the best customer offering for online grocery in the world, proven in the UK, one of most developed and competitive markets for grocery online.”
Kroger has partnered with Ocado to help accelerate its ability to provide customers with improved services. The CFC model, incorporating automation and AI, will be used to expand Kroger products to a larger footprint.
“Kroger continues to accelerate the expansion of our US network to redefine the customer experience,” said Gabriel Arreaga, Kroger’s chief supply chain officer. “Our partnership with Ocado is and will continue to be rooted in our ability to deliver a value-added customer-centric solution that brings fresh food to customers through our seamless ecosystem.”
The newly named location will complement Kroger’s previously announced CFC sites in Monroe, OH, Groveland, FL, Frederick, MD, Atlanta, GA, Dallas, TX, Pleasant Prairie, WI, and Great Lakes, Pacific Northwest and West regions. Kroger plans to open the country’s first two CFC sites in Monroe, OH, a suburb of Cincinnati and Groveland, FL in early 2021.
As part of their accelerated growth plan, Kroger is also investing and innovating to optimise in-store fulfilment technology and processes. Through their expanding partnership, Kroger is also collaborating with Ocado to leverage their in-store fulfilment (ISF) capabilities with Kroger’s technology and digital solutions to support the rapid growth of pickup demand across Kroger stores nationwide. Ocado’s in-store fulfilment solution includes proprietary software that supports associate efforts to assemble orders and aims to make it easier and more efficient for them to find products when fulfilling customer pickup orders.
“Kroger continues to accelerate the development and rollout of customer-centric technology and digital capabilities to build a seamless ecosystem that combines the best of the physical store experience with the digital experience,” said Yael Cosset, Kroger’s chief technology and digital officer. “Ocado’s in-store fulfilment capabilities, leveraging AI, will further contribute to continuous improvement of the customer pickup experience.”
Source: Ocado Group