Coffee Giant Luckin Coffee Announces ‘Smart Unmanned Retail Strategy’ To Build Density, Engage Customers

Posted On: 1/12/2020

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BEIJING, China -- Luckin Coffee Inc., a leading Chinese coffee chain, said it is entering the unattended retail market with the launch of its Luckin Coffee Express smart coffee machine and Luckin popMini smart vending machine, with a goal to further increase the density of its network and bring its coffee closer to customers.

Featuring Swiss Schaerer coffee machines, IIAC Gold Award coffee bean blends from WBC coffee masters and other premium ingredients, Luckin Coffee Express reportedly provides freshly brewed drinks with the same quality and taste as in Luckin stores to deliver the “Luckin Coffee, Closer to You” concept.

Luckin popMini’s biggest attraction is “E-commerce Prices in Vending Machines.” By working closely with global suppliers and achieving economies of scale through large volume procurement and customization and reducing channel costs, Luckin says its machines enable customers to enjoy the convenience of vending machines and low prices comparable to e-commerce at the same time.

The machines will be located in office buildings, campuses, airports, bus terminals, gas stations, highway service stations and residential communities, supplementing the existing Luckin store network. The terminals are fully integrated with its technology system and are empowered by IoT, big data, facial recognition and other advanced technologies that the coffee giant says will create new customer experiences.

Luckin Coffee also reported that its number of self-operated stores reached 4,507 by the end of 2019, which the company believes makes it the largest coffee chain by number of stores in China as of Dec. 31.

“Luckin Coffee’s unmanned retail network, store footprint and e-commerce channels, together form our proprietary omni-channel customer traffic network. With our value propositions of high quality, high affordability and high convenience, Luckin is rapidly becoming a well recognized, on-trend, and mass market fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) brand,” said Luckin Coffee chief executive Jenny Zhiya Qian. “Luckin Coffee is dedicated to building a closed-loop smart retail platform with our own customer traffic and our own products. We will continue to grow both own traffic and products, improve brand value, expand the scale of our platform, and create more value for our customers. Luckin Coffee is on track to realize our mission of being part of everyone’s life, starting with coffee.”

Luckin Coffee officials reported that 14 leading global suppliers, including PepsiCo, Nestle, Fonterra, Schaerer, LDC, Olam, COFCO, CJ, Yili, Mengniu, Orion Confectionery, and Calbee, participated in its ceremony launching Luckin Coffee’s unmanned retail strategy.

“Industry experts commented that Luckin Coffee’s unmanned retail network eliminates payroll and decoration costs, lowers rental expenses significantly and enjoys a better cost structure compared to that of small-format stores,” the company reported. “As a result, Luckin Coffee is able to become closer to customers at lower transaction costs whilst ensuring product quality. The unmanned retail strategy will fuel customer acquisition and increase customer purchase frequency for Luckin Coffee.”