The first stores opened in Austria in partnership with myAcker company.
Austrian grocery retailer Billa (part of Rewe Group) is testing a new container store format without traditional cash registers and salespeople. The first retail units of about 11 square meters have opened in partnership with myAcker.
The project, called AckerBox, is designed for small communities that do not have their grocery suppliers. The store carries about 200 items of the most popular food and daily necessities.
Billa has opened container stores in four provinces in the federal state of Carinthia in the south of the country, giving residents of small communities access to sought-after products within walking distance in locations where opening a full-size store is not possible. The company expects that the project can attract local producers to cooperate.
The new format is testing the possibilities of contactless service and payment for the goods. It is necessary to scan selected goods to purchase and pay for them at the self-service checkout. It is noteworthy that the company does not require a particular mobile application to make purchases, and payment is accepted, including cash.
If the pilot project proves successful, Billa will scale up the project and open container stores in other areas.