Sun Cleans Up On Aisle Two

By Michael Singer (Send Email)
Posted Jan 11, 2002


You are at the checkout counter with your 15 items (or less). But instead of getting a paper receipt that you are probably going to throw away anyhow, your inbox now has a record of your purchase with a couple of coupons that you can use on your next visit. Sun teams up with AfterBOT to make virtual digital receipts for the Smart and Final warehouse grocery chain.

Atlanta-based Web services company AfterBOT, Inc. and Sun Microsystems say they are working to make that a reality in some 233 Smart and Final stores.

The Commerce, Calif.-based warehouse grocery chain Thursday says it has already begun using the AfterBOT solution, powered by Palo Alto, Calif.-based Sun, to generate what their analysis indicates will be in excess of 30 million digital receipts per year.

The solution uses AfterBOT's ReceiptsPLUS web-service application with Sun Enterprise servers and Sun StorEdge arrays. ReceiptsPLUS is a digital receipt implementation based the grocery and retail store industry standards.

"When fully implemented, AfterBOT's innovative ReceiptsPLUS solution will give our customers the ability to securely view their receipt details and related purchase information on our Web site, a unique service that none of our competitors offer today," says Smart and Final Vice-President of Store Technology Bob Graham. "In addition, our analysis indicates that the ReceiptsPLUS solution, combined with the flexibility and scalability of network server technology, will enable us to generate significant cost savings by streamlining key business processes and enhancing our loss prevention capability."

The solution is a money saver for the grocery retailer because retailers can create, deliver and archive digital receipts using in-store point-of-sale (POS) transaction data. In addition to providing a digital version of the paper receipt, the ReceiptsPLUS solution allows the retailer to provide new online self-service functions with each customer receipt designed to increase operating efficiency and enhance customer service.

"We are excited about working with AfterBOT to provide unique and powerful Web-services which enable Smart and Final to offer the next generation of online services to their customers while reducing overall customer service costs," says Sun Retail Industry Solutions director Bob DeLaney.

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