2 retail experts discuss the future of automation, the changing importance of brick-and-mortar, and the future of off-premise sales

SourceBusiness Insider
CountryMiddle east

Retailers made many changes to adapt to pandemic-era business, and some of those changes are here to stay. Insider spoke with Buck Jordan, CEO of Wavemaker Labs, and Imogen Wethered, CEO of Qudini, on what retailers should expect from a post-pandemic retail landscape. Transcript has been edited for clarity and length: Insider: What trends caused by the coronavirus pandemic do you expect to last, even after the pandemic subsides? Jordan: One big trend that isn't going away is definitely going to be the move towards more low-touch solutions. The concern over health and human safety has transformed the way people think about their everyday life, and food's a huge part of that. There's more interest to automate food production and improve the whole journey from seed to fork. We have machines at Wavemaker that are autonomously making pizza and robots making drinks. Restaurants are forced into this really expensive delivery model where takeout takes 30% cut of their profits.

These delivery services, while critical,...