Coca-Cola European Partners (CCEP) has invested in two start-ups to explore how on-demand delivery and self-driving technologies can transform the customer experience.
The Coca-Cola bottler, through its CCEP Ventures innovation investment fund, has acquired a 25% stake in Kol, an on-demand beverage delivery service in Paris that distributes a range of drinks to customers’ doors in 30 minutes.
CCEP will also take a 15% investment stake in TeleRetail, a self-driving technology company that has developed – with the support of the European Space Agency – an autonomous robot that uses satellite imagery to deliver products at industrial sites and in urban areas. CCEP earlier this year trialled TeleRetail’s technology at UK theme park Alton Towers.
According to CCEP, Kol and TeleRetail are adopting digital-first approaches to tackle a set of common logistical challenges faced by the bottler.
These partnerships are the first examples of how CCEP Ventures, which launched in February, will bring new ideas and technologies into CCEP.
“CCEP Ventures finds, funds, and fosters new ideas that help CCEP adapt to new trends, while supporting some of the best start-ups in the market through our extensive experience and network,” said Nik Jhangiani, chief financial officer of CCEP.
“As the pace of change in consumer behaviour and technology accelerates, we are constantly looking at ways to evolve our business and deliver a great service to our customers.
“We look forward to sharing our experiences with Kol and TeleRetail and learning from each business’s innovation. Through these partnerships, we can ensure we are continually adapting our own established model for a digital-first world, and have an innovative new approach to getting our drinks into the hands of our customers faster.”
Pierre Nicolet, co-founder of Kol, said: “We are delighted to have CCEP Ventures as one of our preferred partners. This partnership will enable us to scale more quickly, benefitting from CCEP’s industry knowledge and experience through access to its European-wide network. It will also help us meet our international development ambitions, utilising CCEP’s commercial expertise.”
TeleRetail co-founder Torsten Scholl added: “Automating CCEP’s logistics tasks offers very interesting challenges. We are therefore excited to accelerate the development of a world-leading outdoor logistics automation company together with CCEP Ventures and to share our innovations, know-how and technologies.”
The news comes as CCEP Ventures announces it is scouting for more entrepreneurs and start-ups that are focused on finding solutions to key industry challenges, whether through customer experience, new distribution models, future packaging design or intelligent data and pricing analytics systems.
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2021
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