The pandemic has brought with it a rise in inflation due to the increase in the cost of energy (which translates into a 42% increase in the electricity bill for households in Spain according to the OCU), the rise in logistics costs (an increase of between 1000-1500% in the transport of goods from China to Europe and America) and the shortage of raw materials due to the abrupt movements in demand and bottlenecks in the supply chain, all of which is causing a situation where the profit and loss account of the companies in the sector is being greatly impacted. With this scenario in the sector, technology is an enabler that allows to establish mechanisms to reduce operating costs, and additionally allows mechanisms to increase revenues; let's not forget that the e-commerce sector is growing at rates of 10-15% per year and there is a greater adoption of ecommerce (80%), increase in digital payments (+26%) with special focus on the food sector (+27%).
Stores will become ShowRooms, and centers for advising and creating new shopping experiences for customers. All this brings with it demanding needs for hyper-connectivity and high processing capacity. The model is already being defined by new branches in the banking sector, and Caixabank is a good example of this. In short, we are talking about sensorization, image recognition - self checkout contactless-, AI, use of technology to digitize store employees, etc.
Natural language search mechanisms, new voice and image channels, hyper-personalization, the use of social networks to drive real-time shopping through livestreaming, as well as Metaversos and gaming platforms where physical, including digital, products can be purchased. All this allows building a Unichannel strategy, as a next step beyond omnichannel. Finally, new sales channels need new payment and agile financing channels to enable them and make them possible (PSD2 Directive, pay by link, R2P, Buy Now Pay Later, etc.).
By building a digital twin we can have a complete view of the process, with the data unified in one system, and with the advanced analytics capability that AI gives you, we can implement demand forecasting models, inventory reduction in the supply chain, omni-channel stock insight, transportation route optimization, etc. (BCG believes that by digitizing the supply chain companies will have an increase in their EBITDAs of 2-4 basis points). Example: UPS has realized savings rates of $350-400MM through the use of a route optimization system and, additionally, a reduction of 100MM miles in transportation routes.
Robotize all retailers' warehouses in Spain, increasing sales capacity in e-commerce, reducing order preparation times from an average of 75 minutes to 15 minutes and reducing food waste to 0.04% (while the market average is 2-3%).
As technology companies, we have an ethical and moral duty to help our customers reduce their carbon footprint and enable them to optimize their processes by implementing a social, environmental and economic impact policy that respects the planet. We do not have a planet B and it is everyone's responsibility to take care of it and preserve it for our future generations.