Loop Insights Inc. (MTRX:TSX.V) has released a Near Field Communication (NFC) contactless verification platform that will support brick and mortar stores as they transition to curbside pick-up and delivery during the coronavirus pandemic.
With the necessity of social distancing, the need for contactless technologies is applicable across many industries.
For retail, Loop improves the ad hoc curbside pick-up services that have sprouted since the pandemic, which still required human contact through the exchange of cards and IDs. With one simple tap of the user's device, Loop's verification platform "connects the user's wallet pass information (payment card, coupons, memberships and identification) and the retailer's online and offline data (e-commerce, mobile commerce and in-store) to verify the shopper and validate the transaction," the company stated.
It's relevancy doesn't stop at retail. The healthcare industry is facing additional pressure to minimize human contact in order to reduce the transmission of bacteria and disease. "Loop's Smart Health device requires a simple tap of the patient’s mobile phone to check in and verify their ID. Patients then have frictionless access to everything they need for their visit in one digital wallet pass: real-time notifications and wait time updates, requisition information, and more," the company noted.
Loop CEO Rob Anson explained, "Covid-19 has created the perfect storm of relevancy for our platform. Loop will provide a safe and secure brick and mortar environment that is not only needed during the Covid-19 pandemic, but also as we transition toward a 'new normal' and different expectations. The need for a digital transformation is at the absolute forefront, and our solution will play a large role in future-proofing brick and mortar businesses."
The company noted that the contactless payment market is expected to grow from $10.3 billion in 2020 to $18 billion by 2025, suggesting a compound annual growth rate of 11.7%. "With the retail market projected as the vertical to hold the largest market size during this forecast period, Loop is in a lucrative position, especially from Covid-19's push for contactless consumer interaction," the company noted.
This is just one way Loop's technology is working to level the playing field between brick and mortar stores and online outlets. While e-commerce sites like Amazon have experienced high-growth and have gained a lot of attention, "86.8% of all transactions still occur in a physical location," Anson told Streetwise Reports, “it's time to start leveraging that statistic as we come out of the pandemic, and it starts with connected data."
So what does Loop's technology do?
Many retailers have legacy systems that can't communicate among themselves, leaving information siloed. Loop's artificial intelligence (AI) software connects their clients' physical and digital assets to unlock a holistic understanding of their customer base.
"We created a unique proprietary hardware device, Fobi, that simply plugs into the receipt printer at the point of sale (POS) of a brick and mortar store," Anson explained. "We capture all the data coming out of the POS to the printer: location, employee number, time of day, SKU data of the merchandise purchased, payment details, and inject it into our AI platform."
Once Fobi captures this customer data, Loop merges it with mobile, Wi-Fi and e-commerce data so that the retailer has a more complete picture of the customer. It then uses artificial intelligence to action the data—based on the customers shopping behaviors and loyalty profiles, it triggers personalized offers and messaging.
How will Fobi's solution stack help brick and mortar businesses recover?
"There are new expectations coming out of Covid-19. We are adding digital components to curate a brick and mortar experience that is personalized, yet just as safe and secure as the online space," Anson explained, "which will be especially game-changing for large-scale brick and mortar venues and events, as well as Smart City initiatives."
For instance, a casino has many silos within its property. Loop's technology connects the shopper journey from gambling, to food and beverage, retail shopping, nightlife and events—unlocking a "360 degree view of each customer to reveal their total known customer value," Anson said. As the casino operator gains more insights on each customer, they can deliver more personalized messaging and promotions. Loop's contactless feature future-proofs this solution, by creating an engagement model that is deemed safe and sanitary.
What does the future look like for Loop?
Loop's unique ability to aggregate all of the data from physical location retail environments is gaining traction, and garnering the interest of big players including Amazon Web Services (AWS). At the end of March, Loop announced that Amazon Web Services has provided $100,000 in development funds to the firm.
"Working with AWS enables Loop to streamline and enhance current artificial intelligence functionality of its products, ensuring a future-proof integrated solution for the brick and mortar retail industry," the company stated.
"We feel that Amazon is clearly a global leader when it comes to data security and AI applications, so it is exciting that our product is being recognized and supported by them. These funds will expedite several critical processes surrounding data security and data architecture, which will keep Loop at the forefront of modern-day AI capabilities," commented Anson.
Stockhouse highlighted Loop as one of "5 Promising Stocks under $5," noting, "the plug and play system that Loop has developed integrates existing infrastructure to personalize the shopping experience. . .in the real world. As online retail continues to pose a threat to traditional 'brick and mortar' stores, Loop. . . [gives] retailers and brands the tools to make real-time, data-driven decisions and Loop enables them to curate unique personalized customer experiences. . .a capability which previously did not exist."
The company has approximately 65 million shares outstanding, 85.9 million fully diluted. The company's market cap is CA$13.05 million.[NLINSERT]
1) Patrice Fusillo compiled this article for Streetwise Reports LLC and provides services to Streetwise Reports as an employee. She or members of her household own securities of the following companies mentioned in the article: None. She or members of her household are paid by the following companies mentioned in this article: None.
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