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AiFi adds new funding into its cart to expand autonomous retail footprint


Contactless stores are gaining traction, more so in Europe, but there are some trickling into the U.S., including Atlanta’s Nourish + Bloom Market that opened in January. In that article, we pointed out that the store was entering territory that included Amazon Go, 7-Eleven and Walmart.
Behind some of that cashierless technology are startup companies like Sensei, Standard Cognition, Zippin, Grabango and Trigo, which all recently took in venture capital to advance their approaches.
The latest company with an injection of VC is AiFi, which enables retailers to deploy and scale autonomous shopping cost-effectively. It does this in grocery stores, sport stadiums and convenience stores via a camera-only resource that does not require weighted shelves, significantly decreasing the cost and time it takes to get up-and-running, co-founder and CEO Steve Gu said.
In addition, its advanced tracking algorithms work in up to 10,000 square feet of space to support various shopping methods, including an app, credit card, gated or hybrid entry.
Santa Clara-based AiFi raised $65 million in Series B funding with participation from retail partners Aldi, Zabka and Verizon Ventures, which is enabling the company to utilize 5G technology.

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This round gives the company a total of $80 million in funding and comes four years after we reported on AiFi emerging from stealth and two years after it took in what Gu had called its “pre-Series B.”
He intends …

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