Zippedi Continues Growth & Raises $12.5 Million Series A

 Zippedi, a Silicon Valley-based RaaS (Robotics as a Service) company, has today announced a $12.5 million Series A investment led by Transpose Platform. Additional investors in the round include Gen 1 Capital and Endeavor Catalyst. The company specializes in digitizing grocery and home improvement retail environments to improve the consumer experience whether shopping in person, online or for delivery, and increasing store efficiency by improving out of stocks, price compliance, and e-commerce among other retail issues.

“Understanding that the brick-and-mortar retail business model has remained pretty much unchanged during the last 100 years, we built Zippedi with the idea that by digitizing the physical stores we could help the industry fully take advantage of AI and computer platforms available to digital natives,” noted Luis Vera, CEO and Co-founder of Zippedi. “With our Series A funding, we will be able to expand what we’ve done in the Home Improvement sector and the grocery sector, which will provide us with a huge opportunity globally.”

Zippedi was founded in 2017 and started operating in Sodimac, a leading Latin American Home Improvement chain based in Chile. Once that model was proven, Zippedi expanded the solution to one of the largest Home Improvement Chains in the U.S., which is now expanding the Zippedi solution to 100+ stores. With a similar approach, Zippedi started working with the grocery industry and has managed to generate value not only for retailers, but also the CPGs and Last Mile Delivery companies. Also guided by Mr. Vera, with the experience gleaned in this Latin American Pilot market, Zippedi will invest in taking the learnings to the U.S. grocery market where we will be able to provide a powerful and affordable solution to the grocery industry which has the nuance of having to operate on razor thin margins.

“Having invested in later-stage companies in the retail tech sector, it thrills us to see how Zippedi, in a very capital-efficient manner, has managed to do what predecessors have tried and failed,” said Alex Bangash, Co-founder and General Partner of Transpose Platform. Mr. Bangash added, “What Zippedi is doing in terms of digitizing the retail space is so transformative that we have no doubt that the tech stack they are building will be used by modern retailers who want to provide an excellent shopping experience for their consumers, as well as to operate profitably.”

By digitizing the brick-and-mortar store, retail industry players can now apply workflow collaboration tools, AI, and gain visibility that clearly drives efficiency and profitability. By applying this technology, Zippedi has managed to help its retail and CPG customers increase sales by 2-5% and increase productivity by 30 – 50%. Zippedi also helps their e-commerce/Last Mile Delivery customers minimize substitutions and significantly increase assortment, while at the same time reducing product picking times by up to 50%, gains that are impossible to achieve in the purely physical realm.

“Zippedi is a perfect Robotics as a Service (RaaS) application,” says Zippedi seed-stage lead investor Paul Willard. He is a Partner at Silicon Valley early-stage RaaS venture fund Grep VC. Mr. Willard and Grep VC have invested in other noteworthy RaaS companies, including Zipline, Cobalt Robotics, and Electric Sheep, among others. “The team at Zippedi is applying world class machine learning and robotics skills to create structured digital data for a new domain so that modern tools can be brought fully to bear. Retail tech is a large market, and we see AI applications in the sector continuing to grow, with 85% of all grocery shoppers still preferring to shop in person, even during the pandemic.”

“The Zippedi founders Luis Vera; Ariel Schilkrut, Ph.D. MIT; Alvaro Soto, Ph.D. CMU are some of the world’s experts in retail, logistics, robotics, AI, ML, and computer vision. We invest in the best founders regardless of geography and continue support this amazing team as they expand across North and South America,” said J. Cheng, Managing Director of Gen 1 Capital, “where one of their theses is robots augmenting (not replacing) humans to enable more engagement in high value tasks like caring for customers.”

Zippedi will use the proceeds to accelerate onboarding of new customers as well as continue to build out a comprehensive suite of products to make shoppers happy and retail stores as efficient as possible. Keep your eyes out for a Zippedi in your local retail store and know that the robot is helping make sure you have a great shopping experience.

About Zippedi

Zippedi is a Silicon Valley-based AI startup, Robotics as a Service (RaaS), founded in 2017 by Luis Vera, Ariel Schilkrut, and Álvaro Soto. The company digitizes shelves and optimizes the execution in the store, through a robot that works with AI, which detects Out of Stock, planogram and promotional compliance among other services and makes the tasks of in store personnel more efficient, which directly provides retailers with a better margin and a better shopping experience.

Currently the company has contracts for 200+ retail stores in the U.S. and Latam and expects to significantly increase its footprint globally in the next few years.

About Transpose Platform

Transpose Platform (formerly known as TI Platform Management) is an investment firm that backs disruptive business venture models and ambitious founders. It was established in 2015 by Alex Bangash and Trang T. Nguyen, and it is headquartered in Houston, Texas.

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B20 ESC Task Force continues to design constructive energy policies

The B20 ESC (Energy, Sustainability & Climate) Task Force held the 3rd ESC Task Force Online Meeting on Tuesday to discuss Policy Action that will be recommended at the upcoming G20, as noted in a release issued by PT Pertamina on Friday. The B20, or Business 20, is a G20 outreach group that represents the international business community.

The B20 ESC (Energy, Sustainability & Climate) Task Force held the ‘3rd Task Force Call Meeting’ on Tuesday, April 19, 2022. (Antara/HO-Pertamina)

The B20 ESG Task Force, led by Pertamina, the largest Energy SOE (State-Owned Enterprise) in Indonesia, and Pertamina President Director & CEO Nicke Widyawati, the ESC Task Force Chair, continues to update policy design and policy action, calling for efforts to maintain energy, sustainability and climate change mitigation.

The ESC Task Force Online Meeting was attended by around 140 participants including ESC Task Force Deputy Chair, Agung Wicaksono, ESC Task Force Policy Manager, Oki Muraza, 8 ESC Task Force Co-Chairs, as well as members from 19 industries and 25 countries.

Widyawati invited members of the Task Force to discuss policy design and to explore actionable policy initiatives. “To date, we have received more than 300 comments and inputs that are very constructive and helpful for us to drafting policy. Through the active involvement of all participants, I am confident that this task force will provide relevant and actionable policy recommendations to the G20 leaders.”.

She said that the meeting had gathered recommendations from the B20 Secretariat which would later be added to several new policy actions to be discussed in more depth to suit the focus and collective needs that represent the interests of the G20 Community as a whole.

“Let’s work together to create and deliver the legacy of Indonesia’s G20 presidency this year, both through policies and a series of side events on the real action of the task force, so that we can be fruitful and give the best to the G20,” said Widyawati.

Widyawati also expressed hope that the main objective of the ESC Task Force, ensuring an inclusive process in developing policy recommendations and actions, will be achieved through meetings and discussions.

Task Force Policy Manager Oki Muraza explained that there are currently 12 main policy action inputs, from 14 policy actions discussed in the previous call meeting.

Task Force Deputy Chair Agung Wicaksono explained that the Task Force was striving to develop partnerships and collaborations, develop technology to carry out capacity building in various countries, and increase values to attract investment and financing access.

“To achieve these goals, we invite the realization of a corporate agreement and pilot project in the country, and we targeted to have it completed in September or October 2022,” he said.

The B20 Secretariat offered green energy transition recommendations toward the G20 high-level meeting in Bali in November 2022. The recommendations included accelerating the transition to sustainable energy use, ensuring an adjustable and affordable transition, and welcoming global cooperation on enhancing energy security.

Contact: Fajriyah Usman, VP Corporate Communications, PT Pertamina (Persero)
M: +62 858 8330 8686, Email: fajriyah.usman@pertamina.com, URL: https://www.pertamina.com
Written by: Yuni Arisandy Sinaga, Editor: Sri Haryati (c) ANTARA 2022






Topic: Press release summary

Hong Kong – FEHD continues to take stringent enforcement actions relating to anti-epidemic regulations during long Easter holidays (with photo)

FEHD continues to take stringent enforcement actions relating to anti-epidemic regulations during long Easter holidays (with photo)

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     A spokesman for the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department (FEHD) said today (April 18) that the FEHD continued to step up its inspections territory-wide and conducted joint operations with the Police in various districts across the territory, so as to take stringent enforcement actions against operators, staff and customers of catering businesses and other premises in defiance of the anti-epidemic regulations during the long Easter holidays. The spokesman again reminded parties concerned to remain vigilant and strictly comply with the requirements and directions under the Prevention and Control of Disease (Requirements and Directions) (Business and Premises) Regulation (Cap. 599F) (the Regulation), the Prevention and Control of Disease (Vaccine Pass) Regulation (Cap. 599L) and more.



     The FEHD and the Police inspected a total of 93 catering premises and seven other premises during the joint operations yesterday (April 17); and the FEHD on its own inspected a total of 476 catering premises and 112 other premises. The FEHD initiated procedures on prosecution against operators of 13 catering premises suspected of breaching the requirements under the directions. Details are as follows:

     








Matters involved Number of prosecutions
Mask-wearing 7
Distance or partition between tables 4
Ensuring scanning of “LeaveHomeSafe” venue QR code by customers 1
Ensuring compliance with a minimum of six air changes per hour or properly operating air purifiers meeting the prescribed specifications 1




     The FEHD also required the premises to take corresponding measures for reducing the risk of transmission. Premises found with irregularities had to, on the subsequent day of being identified of the irregularities by the enforcement officers, cease selling or supplying food or drink for consumption on the premises from 3pm to 4.59am of the subsequent day, for a period of three, seven or 14 days. In addition, the FEHD also issued fixed penalty notice (FPN) to one customer suspected of breaching the requirement of scanning “LeaveHomeSafe” venue QR code. 



     If a person responsible for carrying on a catering business contravenes the Regulation or the requirements and directions of the Vaccine Pass, he or she is liable to be prosecuted and, upon conviction, to a maximum fine of $50,000 and imprisonment for six months. Persons who are present at catering premises or other specified premises must comply with directions applicable to them. Non-compliance with the relevant directions is an offence and offenders are subject to a maximum fine of $10,000. The liability may be discharged by paying a fixed penalty of $5,000. In addition, for customers in breach of the requirement on the maximum number of persons per table within catering premises, they are liable to a fixed penalty of $5,000 for violating the Prevention and Control of Disease (Prohibition on Gathering) Regulation (Cap. 599G). For customers not wearing a mask when they are not eating or drinking at a table therein or they are not eating or drinking, they are liable to a fixed penalty of $5,000 for contravening the Prevention and Control of Disease (Wearing of Mask) Regulation (Cap. 599I).



     Apart from the enforcement actions abovementioned, the FEHD also conducted joint operations with several government departments over the long Easter holidays at public places where people including foreign domestic helpers (FDHs) congregate during weekends and public holidays to carry out publicity and educational work, appealing to them to raise awareness of epidemic prevention and comply with the various anti-epidemic regulations and restrictions.



     The FEHD, in collaboration with the Hong Kong Police Force, the Labour Department, relevant District Offices, and the Leisure and Cultural Services Department, conducted joint operations yesterday at various public places in Central and Western, Wan Chai, Eastern, Yau Tsim, Mong Kok, Sham Shui Po, Shatin, Sai Kung and Tsuen Wan districts, near popular FDHs gathering places during public holidays. Apart from arranging for cleansing service contractors to strengthen the street cleansing services at the relevant spots, the FEHD also stepped up patrols to combat unlicensed hawking activities. During the operation, a total of 10 FPNs were issued to persons who breached public cleanliness offences or caused obstruction in public places; and six seizures of hawker abandoned articles were effected. FDHs have also been reminded by other government departments to comply with the regulations on mask wearing and the prohibition of gatherings in public places.



     ​To minimise the risk of COVID-19 transmission, the spokesman strongly appealed to all sectors of the community to stay vigilant and comply with the relevant regulations on prevention and control of disease in a concerted and persistent manner. The FEHD will continue to strengthen its publicity efforts and enforcement actions. All sectors are reminded to exercise self-discipline and co-operate to fight the virus together.

Hong Kong – LCSD continues to step up patrols on anti-epidemic regulations (with photos)

LCSD continues to step up patrols on anti-epidemic regulations (with photos)

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     The Leisure and Cultural Services Department (LCSD) continued to step up patrols at venues under its management during the Easter holiday, ensuring venue users to abide by the anti-epidemic regulations in order to minimise the risk of the latent transmission chains in the community.



     The LCSD spokesman said the department continued to step up inspections, together with relevant departments today (April 17), at its leisure and cultural venues and asked venue users to abide by the rules. Repeated offenders are prosecuted after verbal warnings are ignored.



     Promotional leaflets as well as venue broadcast and notices were used to urge foreign domestic helpers to raise awareness of epidemic prevention and comply with the various anti-epidemic regulations and restrictions during patrols by the LCSD staff.



     The LCSD spokesman reminds members of the public that according to the Prevention and Control of Disease (Prohibition on Group Gathering) Regulation (Cap. 599G), the relevant restriction on the number of persons currently allowed per group gathering in a public place is two. In addition, according to the Prevention and Control of Disease (Wearing of Mask) Regulation (Cap. 599I), a person must wear a mask at all times when the person is entering or present in a specified public place. Any person failing to comply with the above relevant Regulations may be subject to a fixed penalty at $5,000.



     As at 4pm today, over 2 610 times verbal advice were given out during about 5 120 patrols of venues by the LCSD staff since April 15. In the same period, fixed penalty notices were also issued to 34 persons either breaching Cap. 599G on prohibition of group gatherings of more than two persons in a public place, or Cap. 599I on mandatory mask-wearing requirement in specified public places.



     Avoiding social gatherings is of utmost importance in preventing the ongoing spread of the pandemic. The LCSD spokesman asks members of the public to stay vigilant and comply with the relevant regulations on prevention and control of disease in a concerted and persistent manner. Enforcement actions will be taken by the LCSD when irregularities are found.

Hong Kong – FEHD continues to take stringent enforcement actions relating to anti-epidemic regulations during long Easter holidays

FEHD continues to take stringent enforcement actions relating to anti-epidemic regulations during long Easter holidays

******************************************************************************************


     A spokesman for the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department (FEHD) said today (April 17) that the FEHD continued to step up its inspections territory-wide and conducted joint operations with the Police in various districts across the territory, so as to take stringent enforcement actions against operators, staff and customers of catering businesses and other premises in defiance of the anti-epidemic regulations during the long Easter holidays. The spokesman again reminded parties concerned to remain vigilant and strictly comply with the requirements and directions under the Prevention and Control of Disease (Requirements and Directions) (Business and Premises) Regulation (Cap. 599F) (the Regulation), the Prevention and Control of Disease (Vaccine Pass) Regulation (Cap. 599L) and more. The FEHD will continue to conduct enforcement operations proactively, and urges premises operators not to defy the law.



     The FEHD and the Police inspected a total of 96 catering premises and five other premises during the joint operations yesterday (April 16); and the FEHD on its own inspected a total of 409 catering premises and 82 other premises. The FEHD initiated procedures on prosecution against operators of five catering premises suspected of breaching the requirements under the directions. Details are as follows:

 








Matters involved Number of prosecutions
Ensuring scanning of “LeaveHomeSafe” venue QR code by customers 2
Mask-wearing 1
Distance or partition between tables and ensuring scanning of “LeaveHomeSafe” venue QR code by customers 1
Distance or partition between tables 1


 

     The FEHD also required the premises to take corresponding measures for reducing the risk of transmission. Premises found with irregularities had to, on the subsequent day of being identified of the irregularities by the enforcement officers, cease selling or supplying food or drink for consumption on the premises from 3pm to 4.59am of the subsequent day, ranging from three, seven and 14 days. In addition, the FEHD also issued fixed penalty notice (FPN) to one customer suspected of breaching the requirement of scanning “LeaveHomeSafe” venue QR code. During the joint operations, the Police also took enforcement actions, including issuing FPNs.



     If a person responsible for carrying on a catering business contravenes the Regulation or the requirements and directions of the Vaccine Pass, he or she is liable to be prosecuted and, upon conviction, to a maximum fine of $50,000 and imprisonment for six months. Persons who are present at catering premises or other specified premises must comply with directions applicable to them. Non-compliance with the relevant directions is an offence and offenders are subject to a maximum fine of $10,000. The liability may be discharged by paying a fixed penalty of $5,000. In addition, for customers in breach of the requirement on the maximum number of persons per table within catering premises, they are liable to a fixed penalty of $5,000 for violating the Prevention and Control of Disease (Prohibition on Gathering) Regulation (Cap. 599G). For customers not wearing a mask when they are not eating or drinking at a table therein or they are not eating or drinking, they are liable to a fixed penalty of $5,000 for contravening the Prevention and Control of Disease (Wearing of Mask) Regulation (Cap. 599I).



     Apart from the enforcement actions abovementioned, the FEHD also conducted joint operations with several government departments over the long Easter holidays at public places where people including foreign domestic helpers (FDHs) congregate during weekends and public holidays to carry out publicity and educational work, appealing to them to raise awareness of epidemic prevention and comply with the various anti-epidemic regulations and restrictions.



     The FEHD, in collaboration with the Hong Kong Police Force, the Labour Department, relevant District Offices, and the Leisure and Cultural Services Department, conducted joint operations yesterday at various public places in Central and Western, Wan Chai, Eastern, Yau Tsim, Mong Kok, Sham Shui Po, Shatin, Sai Kung and Tsuen Wan districts, near popular FDHs gathering places during public holidays. Apart from arranging for cleansing service contractors to strengthen the street cleansing services at the relevant spots, the FEHD also stepped up patrols to combat unlicensed hawking activities. During the operation, two FPNs were issued to persons who breached public cleanliness offences. FDHs have also been reminded by other government departments to comply with the regulations on mask wearing and the prohibition of gatherings in public places.



     To minimise the risk of COVID-19 transmission, the spokesman strongly appealed to all sectors of the community to stay vigilant and comply with the relevant regulations on prevention and control of disease in a concerted and persistent manner. The FEHD will continue to strengthen its publicity efforts and enforcement actions. All sectors are reminded to exercise self-discipline and co-operate to fight the virus together.