Plum Ventures Invests in Smart Retail Firm Jingpin Hi-Tech
Jingpin Hi-Tech, a smart retail firm specializing in Software as a Service (SaaS) systems, has recently completed an A round of financing worth tens of millions of yuan, featuring exclusive investment from Plum Ventures. Funds from this round of financing will be mainly allocated for marketing, technology upgrades and overseas market expansion.
Founded in 2013, Jingpin Hi-Tech also focuses on Artificial Intelligence of Things (AIoT) technology and builds smart retail channels for a range of brands and operators. The firm’s system is compatible with a variety of smart retail terminals.
Founder Zou Guangwei graduated from the School of Software and Microelectronics at Peking University. He was the co-founder and CTO of Acewill, a SaaS provider for the catering industry, and has 10 years of experience in chain retail system products and R&D management. The core team members of Jingpin Hi-Tech have many years of experience in industrial internet and retail companies.
Unmanned retail is not an entirely new phenomenon, developing rapidly since 2017, with unmanned convenience stores as the main example. However, that market has shrank of late. In recent years, more and more intelligent retail terminals, another form of unmanned retail, are becoming popular.
In 2021, Tang Binsen, founder of Chinese beverage brand Genki Forest, set an internal goal of establishing 100,000 smart showcases in the country by the end of 2022. Nongfu Spring, Coca-Cola and other beverage giants are also laying out their own smart showcases.
At present, Jingpin Hi-Tech provides solutions for retail brands and operators including equipment management, system alerts, account management, mini-program operation, and franchisee services. With its technology, one account can manage a variety of retail terminals with different business states. It can support multi-scenario businesses, including snacks and drinks, coffee vending, dairy sales, cosmetic vending medicines and other categories. In addition, the firm supports customized software for different needs across various industries.
Jingpin Hi-Tech’s retail IoT terminal can quickly create solutions that meet customers’ needs, and can reduce development and deployment time by 80%-90%. At present, Jingpin Hi-Tech has cooperated with thousands of enterprises including Pepsi, Coca-Cola, Master Kong and Suntory.
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Jingpin Hi-Tech is also expanding in overseas markets. In Zou Guangwei’s view, compared with the Chinese market, foreign markets offer substantial potential as they are faced with the problem of old equipment and systems. According to him, thousands of smart tea vending devices of Chai Point, a well-known tea beverage chain in India, are using his firm’s system. Krispy Kreme, the second largest donut chain in the U.S., and Necta, an Italian self-service coffee machine brand, are also customers of the firm.