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AI Startup, Focal Systems, Receives Strategic Investment from Zebra Ventures to Scale Globally

Focal Systems, Inc., the industry leader in retail automation solutions, announced that it has received a strategic investment from Zebra Ventures, the investment arm of Zebra Technologies, to scale the business of AI-powered retail technology products. Focal Systems works with leading retailers on four continents to provide AI-powered cameras and an advanced analytics stack that functions as a retail store operating system.

AI startup, Focal Systems, receives strategic investment from Zebra Ventures to scale globally

“The future of retail is powered by real-time, accurate data and AI algorithms that leverage that data to automate and optimize all functions of a retailer’s business. We know that some retailers and consumer packaged goods companies would like to receive shelf inventory data multiple times per day, and our shelf edge cameras enable this,” said Francois Chaubard, CEO, Focal Systems. “As experts in deep learning computer vision, we’ve proven with our retailers that fixed shelf cameras are the right answer to the out-of-stock problem and beyond, unlocking unparalleled possibilities in how retailers and brands can implement actionable intelligence that drive huge efficiencies and lift.”

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Focal uses shelf cameras to monitor shelves to increase on-shelf availability. It also leverages the same algorithms to eliminate friction at the checkout. These solutions feed into Focal’s AI engine to automate decision making in order to optimize planograms, labor schedules, on-shelf availability and associate productivity while streamlining the supply chain and enhancing the customer experience.

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“Zebra is investing in companies that accelerate our Enterprise Asset Intelligence vision to deliver exceptional value to our customers,” said Tony Palcheck, Managing Director of Zebra Ventures, Zebra Technologies. “As a technology solutions provider to many of the world’s leading retailers, we have heard our customers tout the benefits of Focal as an effective solution for solving out-of-stocks. We believe Focal has superb talent and a deep understanding of the challenges retailers face, positioning them to be successful in this market. As with all Zebra Ventures portfolio companies, we see opportunities to collaborate with Focal to help support our customers.”

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“We are building automation solutions that empower the next generation of retail stores and this investment allows us to accelerate our product roadmap and scale globally.” said Chaubard. “The synergies created by our integrated product portfolio have the ability to truly digitize and transform retailers.”

“Zebra is a marquee brand that our customers trust, and we look forward to the launch of joint go-to-market efforts that will put our mutual customers at the forefront of retail,” said Jeremy Pugh, VP Sales, Focal Systems.

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