Domino’s Pizza puts delivery robots on Texas streets
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Domino’s Pizza puts delivery robots on Texas streets

Fast food giant Domino’s Pizza is no stranger to the tech world. The company has managed to distinguish itself from competitors with a best-in-class app, and recently announced an artificial intelligence (AI)-powered “quality checker” software that would ensure its pizzas meet relevant standards. Now, the company has moved forward with something it’s talked about for some time: delivery robots. Although, at first, they’re only going to be roaming the streets of Houston, Texas.

Domino’s share price has risen by 17% over the last three months

Domino Graph June 19

Source: Yahoo Finance

On Monday, Domino’s announced that it had entered into partnership with Nuro, a robotics delivery start-up, to trial the use of small, autonomous, delivery robots from a store in Houston. Nuro started working on its robots last year, with the eventual goal of renting them out to small businesses – and they don’t just deliver pizza… conceptually, they could deliver anything from flowers to medicine. But for now, Nuro is working exclusively with big companies that can afford to experiment.

This isn’t Domino’s first experiment in the delivery space. In 2017 and 2018, the company partnered with Ford to deliver pizzas via self-driving car; in New Zealand, it has trialled autonomous drone deliveries; and it even built its own delivery robot in Australia.

Domino’s and Nuro are still deciding which store to operate the pizza-robot out of, and should get the pilot running later this year. The plan is to add locations over time, as Domino’s is looking to make this more than just a publicity stunt.

Domino’s executive vice president and chief information officer, Kevin Vasconi, said: “We are always looking for new ways to innovate and evolve the delivery experience for our customers. Nuro's vehicles are specially designed to optimize the food delivery experience, which makes them a valuable partner in our autonomous vehicle journey. The opportunity to bring our customers the choice of an unmanned delivery experience, and our operators an additional delivery solution during a busy store rush, is an important part of our autonomous vehicle testing.”

Disclosure

Dominion holds Domino’s Pizza in its Global Trends Managed Fund.


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