Image: Visual China
BEIJING, January 11 (TMTPOST) — Chinese e-commerce giant JD.com announced on Monday the opening of two robotics shops in the Netherlands.
The autonomous shops, branded Ochama, are located in Leiden and Rotterdam. Two more shops will be open in Amsterdam and Utrecht soon. The launch of Ochama marks the entry of JD.com’s retailing business into the European market.
Users can order products from food to beauty and home furnishings on the Ochama mobile app. Ochama’s shops will then use automated vehicles and robotic arms to pick up items and sort them in accordance with the orders they receive. Users can then pick up their orders via a conveyer belt after scanning a barcode on their app. Orders can also be delivered to users’ homes. Human staff at Ochama’s outlets will provide customers with customer services.
Ochama makes use of JD.com’s advanced technologies in logistics and supply chain to cut costs, allowing the brand to offer a 10% discount on all products to its customers.
“We hope to bring our European customers a brand new shopping experience,” Lei Ling, director of JD.com’s Ochama project said. “With JD.com’s rich experience in retailing, logistics and supply chain, our robotic supermarket will bring quality products with competitive prices and convenient services to consumers in the Netherlands.”
JD.com’s entry into the European market poses a potential challenge to multinational e-commerce heavyweight Amazon. Amazon has launched its own autonomous grocery stores called Amazon Go in the United States and Amazon Fresh in Britain.
In 2021, JD.com started operations in overseas markets like Britain, Germany, the Netherlands and the Middle East. More than half of the company’s projects in overseas markets are autonomous warehouses. JD.com currently operates 80 bonded warehouses and overseas warehouses. In the Netherlands, JD.com reached cooperation with high-end lingerie brand Hunkemöller and now ships the brand’s products in four European countries.