Q&A: Michael Gabay, CEO & Co-founder, Trigo Vision
RTIH: Tell us about Trigo Vision.
MG: Trigo Vision is a computer vision startup reshaping the retail experience. We have created an advanced computer vision automation platform to drive operational efficiency in physical stores and provide an entirely seamless checkout process.
Leveraging world class AI and deep learning, our platform combines a highly sophisticated, ceiling-based camera network with machine vision algorithms to identify and capture customers’ shopping items with exceptional levels of accuracy during their in-store journey.
Our technology offers a host of benefits for retailers wishing to stay ahead of the curve, minimise costs and advance their market share in this transformative retail age. These include streamlining retail operations, preventing or even eliminating shoplifting, delivering invaluable retail insights, optimising in-store real estate following the removal of checkouts and queues and allowing for new customer engagement opportunities.
Our platform offers retailers complete flexibility and scalability for easy and swift deployment into a store of any size, without requiring any type of change to its layout or structure. Their system can also be customised according to cultural differences within each market.
RTIH: What was the inspiration behind setting the company up?
MG: We the co-founders are brothers and over lunch one day we started talking about shopping and how the physical shopping experience in stores seems quite dated. We discussed what could be done to improve it to bring it into the digital age
The initial design was a prototype shopping cart with cameras incorporated to rent out. We took this to retailers and they liked the concept though deemed it far too expensive from the outset due to production and maintenance. We then took this feedback onboard and came up with the idea of putting the technology and cameras in the ceiling rather than in carts.
RTIH: What has been the industry reaction thus far?
MG: We’ve had an overwhelming response from retailers, especially leading grocers in the US and Europe. They are extremely excited about the technology and the vast added value our platform brings both to the market and customers. It is clear that our advanced retail automation platform story resonates very well with every top retailer we have been talking to.
RTIH: What has been your biggest challenge/setback?
MG: Our biggest challenge is meeting the high demand for our technology as several retailers are keen for us to make it available for a large number of stores as soon as possible. We are moving very fast with our development, though at this stage we have limited resources and we are having to postpone some requests until a later date.
RTIH: What are the biggest challenges facing the omnichannel retail sector right now?
MG: By far the biggest challenge for omnichannel retailers is the customer experience. Customers are completely immersed in the e-commerce revolution across many sectors as well as the massive online migration of many transactions and engagements.
However, the traditional grocery market is still behind in many ways and retailers are continually seeking innovative and creative approaches to enhance the customer experience in their physical stores, primarily driven by advanced technology that is now available.
Leading retailers will need to go beyond simply adopting and deploying new technologies in order to create a complete and competitive omnichannel environment. For example, this could be engaging with customers in real-time during their shopping journey in the store and recommending items based on personal historical preferences to create more personal, effective and seamless shopping experience.
RTIH: What's the best question about your company or the market asked of you recently by a.) an investor and b.) a customer?
MG: By an investor: Does this mean I just gather products and walk out? Really? No checkout whatsoever?
By a customer: Can the system actually identify thousands of products that are picked up from the shelf and sometimes placed back by customers?
RTIH: What can we expect to see from Trigo Vision over the next 12 months?
MG: Trigo Vision’s platform and seamless checkout shopping experience will be live for the public in the store of a globally renowned grocery chain during the next year.