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EHI announces 2021 reta awards

By Retail Technology | Wednesday March 10 2021

For the 14th year, EHI has chosen the winners of the retail technology awards (reta) with judges including Retail Technology publisher Miya Knights

The awards have already been accepted by the companies with the best concepts for implementing technology in retailing and they will present their projects on 15 March as part of a digital event.

Three equal-ranking prize winners accepted the award in each of the five categories with this year’s awards for the first time including “Best AI and Robotics Application”.


Category: Best Customer Experience

This award is given to retailers who have introduced forward-looking methods and technologies for improving customer retention and customer satisfaction. Our prize winners:

Küchenquelle relies on modern Mixed Reality (MR) technology for kitchen purchasing advice. Since fall 2020, küchenquelle has been planning customised kitchens at customers' homes throughout Germany with MicrosoftHoloLens 2 and using the .rooms by Island Labs software, a holographic sketching and visualisation platform. Customers experience a 1:1 visualisation of their planned kitchen, which they can see and walk through.

Breuninger has implemented a comprehensive omnichannel concept in its flagshipstore in Nuremberg. Customers can use digital touchpoints to access information and tips. Smart stations provide information about product availability, and they display sizes and product variants on sale in other stores. The concept also includes fitting rooms which feature digital technology, digital pillars to help customers find their way around the store, digital LED walls, a click-and-collect service and the opportunity to book online appointments for consultations, the tailoring service or the beauty department. The project was carried out together with technology partners MuSe Content and 3d-berlin vr solutions.

Food retailer Tegut continues to pursue its strategy of embracing self-service with its innovative convenience store “tegut… teo”. Thanks to smart technology, the shop requires no staff and shopping can be carried out around the clock. The first mini shop in Fulda, with a retail space of 50sqm, is designed to function as a local shop and offers 950 products in the form of everyday essentials. Customers can enter the shop 24/7 using an app with an entry code or their bank or credit card. Purchases can be made via app or using the payment terminal. The companies Wanzldesign for human nature and snabble were involved in developing the format.

Category: Best Enterprise Solution

In this category, retail enterprises are singled out which have enhanced their efficiency by developing and implementing innovative systems and technologies. Our prize winners:

BabyOne has introduced an internal e-learning platform for its employees. They can use the platform, which was initiated with Qualitize, to create and upload videos, create wish lists, request information, mark favourites, comment on posts or react using emoticons. In doing so, BabyOne is creating a lively community for its employees, especially those working on the shop floor, where members inform, motivate and inspire one another.

E.Leclerc has created a platform for exchanging data with suppliers. This required the digitisation of data from thousands of suppliers across all industries – including those industries which had not yet joined the digital revolution. The suppliers can use the platform to provide regularly updated information on their products and prices. This information is then gathered by the platform and made available on E.Leclerc’s website, as well as in outlets and warehouses. A range of functions enable suppliers to, for example, expand upon the nutritional information of their products and to share this with the retailer directly. The project was carried out together with Alkemics.

Fressnapf has introduced the smart assistant “MIA” in its stores, providing the staff working in these stores with access to all customer data. MIA also provides support with managing tasks in-store. For example, the task management solution provides assistance when it comes to sorting products which are past their use-by or best-before dates. In each store, the use-by or best-before date of each individual product is stored digitally. MIA automatically communicates the tasks which need to be done. This means that both the stores themselves and the company’s headquarters have an overview of all products which are about to expire. The project was carried out together with q.beyond.

Category: Best In-store Solution

Retailers who demonstrably have achieved operational value added through the use of technology at the POS proved themselves in this category. Our prize winners:

The Rewe subsidiary BILLA / MERKUR is implementing an automated smart shelf solution from Bizerba in its Austrian supermarkets. It is able to monitor shelf inventories to the gram and centimetre in real time using integrated weight sensors and a smart algorithm which calculates the exact point on the shelf from which a product has been removed, thus identifying the product itself. This means that staff no longer need to carry out a visual inspection of the goods. Inventory levels were able to be reduced considerably as a result of introducing the system. What’s more, this also led to an improvement in internal processes within the supermarket chain.

Edeka Oertwig has installed two smart-scanner and POS systems in addition to the four conventional checkout counters in its Henstedt-Ulzburg store, which opened in March 2020. The smart POS systems, called ScanMate, have two checkout points and two packing zones. Employees no longer have to scan the goods by hand. The exception is only when the code is hard to read or when fruits or vegetables have to be weighed. The 360° barcode scanner stops the belts if the code on an item cannot be read automatically. The system can handle 102 customers per hour with baskets holding an average of 15 articles. Scales and cash management machines can be integrated optionally. The project was implemented in collaboration with ITAB Germany and Glory.

The Rohan Pharmacy has equipped its main outlet in the southern German town of Ettenheim with digital shelf labels that are linked to high-tech shelf cameras, the POS system and the warehouse logistics system. The company uses a total of some 1,100 digital shelf labels. Four cameras automatically report when articles have to be restocked. The supplier for this project is SES-imagotag Germany.

Category: Best Connected Retail Solution

This award (formerly for the category Best Omnichannel Solution) is given to retail enterprises that have modernised their IT infrastructure and connected the online and offline worlds with each other. Our prize winners:

The sporting goods store INTERSPORT is continuing its digital transformation on the French market and linking its e-commerce website with the stores. In France the group has implemented OMS OneStock, an omnichannel solution offered by service provider OneStock. This tool unifies the stores’ inventories and enables the company to offer about 90 percent of its product range on its website for sale in stores and by mail order.

ROSE Bikes has implemented a scalable omnichannel solution in cooperation with ROQQIO Commerce Solutions. The central element of its future IT architecture is the Roqqio Commerce Cloud, which connects the various systems like webshop and manufacturing ERP, enabling scalable omnichannel order management. The bicycle dealer’s brick-and-mortar stores use POS solutions like checkout counters and in-store apps with self-checkout. Rose Bikes aims to offer its customers a seamless omnichannel journey.

The Salling Group has implemented a new ecommerce structure based on advanced UX, headless commerce (Commercetools), headless CMS (Magnolia), microservices and APIs. In the process it has restructured its software. With this solution each chain can use the same system to define its own online presence and content, optimised for mobile devices.

Category: Best AI & Robotics Application

This is the first year in which prizes in this category are being awarded. They are going to retail enterprises that have simplified, accelerated or automated their processes by implementing solutions based on artificial intelligence and robotics.

In collaboration with Diebold Nixdorf and ChecklensIkea has developed an AI-based system that automatically detects scanning errors at SCO terminals. A smart camera above the self-checkout area identifies each product and notifies the customer via the POS software if a product was not scanned. The system can currently identify more than 15,000 Ikea products.

MediaMarktSaturn, together with Retresco, has introduced an intelligent software-as-a-service solution that automatically generates texts from technical product attributes. The online stores of MediaMarkt and Saturn have approximately 350,000 products. Every week several thousand new products are listed and not every manufacturer provides detailed product descriptions for their products. The NLG solution has already generated more than 500,000 unique texts, which the retailer displays on the respective product pages in its e-commerce solutions.

The fruit and vegetable retailer SanLucar Obst & Gemüse Handel has cooperated with the Austrian digitalisation expert Barcotec to develop a smart refrigerator that ensures sufficient supplies of fresh convenience products for customers. Using real-time data from RFID chips, it facilitates accurate production planning by reporting problems such as products that have run out. According to the company, each refrigerator behaves like an autonomous sales stall. For example, it can make sure that it is filled with more melons in hot summer weather and can call for reduced production when bad weather is predicted.

The winning companies will present their ideas at the EHI Innovation Days, powered by EuroCIS, starting on 15 March at 2:00 pm. Free registration for the live stream is possible here. The event will be held in English. Afterwards a networking opportunity will be offered via the platform.


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