TEMPE, Ariz. — As convenience store retailers seek enhanced technology for in-person engagement during COVID-19, Circle K is teaming up with Mastercard to pilot a rollout of frictionless solutions at checkout.
Circle K will launch a pilot of Mastercard's Shop Anywhere platform beginning in October at select locations in the United States and Canada.
The platform, which is supported by artificial intelligence (AI) and computer vision technology partner Accel Robotics, improves the speed of the shopper journey by eliminating existing points of friction through robust inventory and participating shopper analytics — offering consumers no wait, no checkout lines and secure payments.
"As retailers and consumers navigate through one of the most disruptive periods in modern history, it's clear that traditional business operations will need to evolve quickly," said Stephane Wyper, senior vice president, Retail Innovation, Mastercard. "We're committed to supporting our retail partners as they look to meet the unforeseen challenges posed by this new normal and provide their customers with a more digitally enabled, touchless and secure retail experience."
According to Mastercard's Recovery Insights: Shift to Digital report, in-person shopping remains a draw, though consumers are seeking offerings that bridge the physical and digital to streamline the overall experience.
"We are thrilled to partner with Mastercard to help retailers deliver a new world of convenience," said Accel Robotics CEO Brandon Maseda. "Through the Shop Anywhere platform, we are helping shorten the distance between shoppers and satisfaction."
Purchase, N.Y.-based Mastercard is a global technology company in the payments industry. It leverages technologies such as computer vision, AI, biometrics and tokenization to offer retailers best-in-class solutions that combine scale, security and infrastructure to enhance the shopper experience.
Circle K is a subsidiary Canada-based Alimentation Couche-Tard, whose total network of 14,500 stores include 9,414 stores in North America; 2,710 stores in Europe, including Scandinavia, Baltics, Poland, Russia and Ireland; and licensing agreements for approximately 2,350 stores operated under the Circle K banner in 15 other countries and territories.