Micro fulfillment centers might be a partner that helps retailers drive online grocery growth.  Multiple national retailers are experimenting with the process. Kroger now has three of what it says will be 20 Ocado fulfillment centers in the works while Walmart is testing Alert Innovations technology at a New Hampshire store.
Meanwhile KNAPP and Takeoff Technologies announced in April that their partnership was strengthening with a $150 million, 50-site order, which represents one of the most significant events in grocery e-commerce adoption.
Takeoff offers a micro fulfillment solution that it says fills grocery orders faster and at a fraction of the cost of traditional methods.
“It is extremely exciting to take our partnership between Takeoff and KNAPP to the next level, and deliver on our promise of reliability, affordability and scalability,” says José Vicente Aguerrevere, co-founder and CEO of Takeoff.  “By the end of 2020, Takeoff will have accumulated at least $2 billion in gross merchandise volume.”
The companies say the next-generation design will increase output and decrease friction. An “open-shuttle technology” will optimize the space used for order sorting.
Kroger’s Ocado locations will be able to quickly and efficiently assemble orders. Its first facility is under construction in Ohio while two more were recently announced for Central Florida and the Mid-Atlantic region.
“This marks another important step toward combining Kroger’s long-standing dedication to innovative grocery services with Ocado’s unique, industry-leading technology,” says Luke Jensen, CEO of Ocado Solutions. “These CFCs (customer fulfillment centers) will play a crucial role in helping Kroger offer its customers a superior online shopping experience.”