Made in Germany Innovation

By Christian Warning   read

In Dusseldorf, the first fully automated and autonomous robot store opens its doors to the public.

December 23, 2020

Shopping behavior evolves constantly, and now more than ever because of the pandemic. The founders of TYPY, a fully automated supermarket, embrace the trend of flexible and contact-free shopping at any time. The innovative flagship store just opened at a prime location in the Medienhafen in Dusseldorf. A customer simply orders via app or at the terminal inside of the store, and a fully automated digital robotic system picks the order and places it into the pickup station inside the shop. Products can be preordered and collected 24/7. In addition, a fully automated coffee bar provides visitors with fresh local coffee-to-go at a good price.

The whole digital system enables the customer to preorder or purchase locally—in a touchless way served by a fully robotic solution. The end-to-end process enables efficient day-to-day stocking with minimum space requirements. “The ideal concept for all kinds of hotspots and channels,” said Carlo Caldi, CEO and one of the founders of TYPY and former Tank & Rast COO.

“Our concept will be the New Normal, since it is adaptable to meet the needs of an everchanging society. It presents a significant addition to existing supermarket concepts,” explained Maximilian Gronemeyer, COO and co-founder of TYPY. The two founders rely on a long retail business experience and with common interest in digitalization of retail processes. A start-up spirit is in the air. Soon, more store locations are due to open at several spots in Dusseldorf, and over the next few years, TYPY plans to open stores in major hubs across Germany and further across Europe.

“Don’t call it a supermarket!” is the stance of the fully automated store. Unlike conventional supermarket designs, TYPY is modern, stylish and simple. There are no endless shelves or overwhelming billboards. The smell of coffee and relaxing music fills the air. A wooden panel around the robotic system creates a warm and welcoming atmosphere. A media screen at the entrance welcomes shoppers with impressive imagery about the world of coffee, wine and fresh food. The variety of goods to choose from includes grocery and hygiene products, along with fresh food such as wraps, sandwiches, bowls and ready meals.

Broich Catering, an established and experienced specialist when it comes to fresh dishes, collaborates with TYPY on the fresh-made products. Broich employees work behind the scenes to provide the TYPY store with fresh food and ready meals—a great example of how new challenges can be faced with innovation (co-operation between a tech-driven retail platform and a catering company) and how they open up new possibilities. 

TYPY stores satisfy customer needs for a fresh meal for breakfast, lunch or even dinner. The concept also appeals to customers who expect to have their basic needs fulfilled at any time, and those who are running low on time and would like to pick up their pre-ordered purchase, for example, on their way home from work. The vision of TYPY is to create a lifestyle where the act of shopping blends in the demands of everyday life in an easy and inspirational way.

Christian Warning is founder and managing director of The Retail Marketeers, a Hamburg, Germany-based sales and marketing retail think tank. Christian worked with Royal Dutch/Shell for 13 years in different retail management functions and spearheaded Shell’s billion-dollar non-fuels retail business in Germany. He also developed Germany’s largest c-store franchise chain outside petrol filling stations as a senior manager of Deutsche Bahn/German rail. Christian is the NACS Regional Representative in the DACH (Germany, Austria, Switzerland) region. 

Questions or comments? Contact Christian at or #NACSGlobal.