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Retail companies spend millions – sometimes hundreds of millions – of rands investing in retail display cabinets for better product placement and improved quality. Cabinets are typically provided to stores free of charge with the promise that they will increase sales to cover the investment. The problem is that after the cabinets are delivered, the owner has very little visibility and control over these assets.

The challenge of retail asset management

Vending and gaming machines are subject to very dynamic market conditions and are located in busy areas with harsh ambient conditions. Are they operating correcting, are they stocked properly, are they where they should be. The owner doesn’t typically know where the cabinets are at any given time due to an unauthorized move or even theft – resulting in reported 5 – 5% annual loss of assets. Cabinets are often switched off to save electricity, resulting in poor product quality, which has a huge impact on product sales. Automated, permanently integrated solutions that monitor the state of the cabinets are increasingly important. Information about fill levels and withdrawals on site are essential to ensure the efficient management of the logistic processes. The malfunction of cabinets results in significant loss of turnover and must be resolved as quickly as possible.

Transforming retail units into intelligent assets

Vodacom’s Connected Cabinets can provide the answer by transforming your retail display cabinets into connected, intelligent assets able to report their location, operational status and stock levels in real time, offering more opportunities to streamline your operation. Using machine to machine technology, your individual cabinets can be transformed into a network of intelligent, connected cabinets, which automatically communicate all kinds of information to you. This is achieved by fitting each cabinet with a series of sensors and a Vodacom global sim. The sensors monitor the cabinet internal environment, while the sim sends the info back to you via Vodacom’s network.

This means we can tell you the cabinets internal weight, so you can keep an eye on stock levels, the interior temp and humidity, helping to avoid stock being spoiled, whether the cabinet is switched on or off, showing you how much energy is used, whether the door is closed or shut, giving you an insight into customer interactions, and even the cabinets location so you are alerted if it ends up somewhere it shouldn’t.

All the data is analyzed by Vodacom and presented on a user-friendly web-based portal, so you can see what is going on no matter where you are. This service is based on our network strength and global reach in both developed and developing markets to deliver real-time, dynamic information. As a leader in IoT solutions, we provide the devices to capture the data, networks to deliver it and applications to turn it into insightful information and business insight.

Vodacom's solution presents the transparency needed to be able to seize control of your cabinets and freezers to cut costs, optimise stock levels and increase sales per asset.

Find out more 

Chat with our Vodacom Business product experts and we’ll walk you through how IoT can add value to your business.

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