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03/18/2021

AI platform helps 3 independent chains compete against larger competitors

The platform Hypersonix shared how two small grocers and a pharmacy leveraged real-time insights to deliver better pricing, consumer insights and more.
Dan Ochwat
Executive Editor
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AI platform provider Hypersonix has been bringing its data-driven solution to independent retailers, helping the smaller retailers with real-time intelligence that can help them with pricing, promotions and more.

The San Jose, Calif.-based technology company said the idea of an automated, AI-powered platform tends to be associated with large, national retail chains and thought of as time-consuming, expensive investments, but they want to dispel that notion. They also said it’s a solution retailers should use to optimize their private label programs. 

“Retailers with strong private label programs have often struggled with private label cannibalization resulting from the proliferation of national branded products,” said Todd Michaud, president and chief commercial officer at Hypersonix, to Store Brands. “Retailers can unlock the true potential of category growth opportunities by leveraging artificial intelligence to understand how to make the best assortment, pricing, promotions and inventory decisions. The whole idea is to better understand the benefits and consequences of our merchandising decisions in advance and to tune our decisions based on our category and brand level objectives.”  

Hypersonix recently deployed its AI platform with three regional retailers: Carlie C’s, a 25-store chain in North Carolina, that is associated with the IGA cooperative; HomeTown Pharmacy, a 40-store pharmacy in Michigan and Indiana; and Pyramid Foods, a 50-store grocer in Missouri.

With Carlie C’s, Hypersonix aimed to improve their competitive balance with larger chains nearby, focusing on competitive pricing against those competitors. The platform honed on key factors such as identifying consumer demand, competitive positioning, internal economics and localized category goals. 

“As a smaller chain, using AI to improve the business has always seemed like something that would be out of reach for us. I must say that it has been incredibly easy and fast to implement Hypersonix and now we are looking to maximize results,” said Mack McLamb, president of Carlie C. McLamb Enterprises.

Pyramid Foods leveraged the technology to analyze consumer demand and data that could help them price products that met the needs of their local shoppers — and do so automatically. “Historically it has been a manual process to set pricing in our various locations, especially with the strong competitors that we face here. Now that we have the technology to make informed, accurate changes in real time, there are a variety of other areas where we plan to use Hypersonix,” said Erick Taylor, president and CEO of Pyramid Foods. 

Lastly, HomeTown Pharmacy powered the platform to look at crossover sales within its pharmacy and retail stores.“Although we pride ourselves on being a long-running and family-owned pharmacy, that doesn’t mean we aren’t also embracing the latest technologies to improve the level of service for our valued customers,” said Jonathan Grice, president of HomeTown Pharmacy. “Working with Hypersonix is helping us figure out what we need to do in order to not only grow on the pharmacy side, but also increase sales for the rest of our retail products.”