Sharaf DG brings shopping via automated vending machines

The purpose behind the vending machine is to reduce the time it takes to service a customer.



By Abdul Basit (chief Reporter)

Published: Thu 18 Jun 2015, 11:52 PM

Last updated: Wed 8 Jul 2015, 3:18 PM

A unique feature in the Middle East’s largest electronics store, which spreads over an area of 100,000 square feet, is the concept of automated vending machines used for dispensing laptops, tablets, mobiles and cameras. Supplied photo
A unique feature in the Middle East’s largest electronics store, which spreads over an area of 100,000 square feet, is the concept of automated vending machines used for dispensing laptops, tablets, mobiles and cameras. Supplied photo

Dubai: Sharaf DG on Wednesday opened doors of new way of shopping at its Times Square store where technology meets customers and provides hassle free shopping experience starting from entering the store to check out without queuing.

A unique feature in the Middle East’s largest electronics store, which spreads over an area of 100,000 square feet, is the concept of Automated Vending Machines used for dispensing laptops, tablets, mobiles and cameras.

The vending machines in Sharaf DG are the largest in the world. The laptop vending machine is a one of its kind in the world. The purpose behind the vending machine is to reduce the time it takes to service a customer. The vending machines are a sight to watch with a robotic arm actually moving in and moving out picking stocks.

Sharaf DG chief executive officer Nilesh Khalkho declined to provide investment involved in the renovation of the store, but said hopes the store will attract more customers and increase the sales volume.

“Our market share in electronics stores is around 40 per cent and this store will definitely increase it,” Khalkho told

Khaleej Times. “It has taken us close to two years of work starting from consumer shopping behaviour research, to understanding what drives customers to visit stores be it online or physical stores and creating a customer centric shopping experience, It’s a new way of doing things, a new way of shopping. One that is fresh, new and stylish,” he explained.

He mentioned that rest of the 24 stores in the UAE and six in other GCC countries will also be renovated on new concept in a year’s time. “Since we have to close the store for renovation, so we look for the right time to start the work,” he explained.

The company will open two new stores — Dubai and RAK — this year, he informed. “Our year-to-date sales has grown more than 30 per cent,” he added.

All Sharaf DG staff now carry a tablet which is loaded with the Sharaf DG Sales Tool, an assisted selling application which helps the staff engage with the customers, search for products, provide features, cast product details to retail area screens which are placed in each category. Sharaf DG staff can now invoice products, collect payment, unbox products at the yellow colored tables called Tech Bench. “So as a customer you can checkout easily in the new Sharaf DG store. Our sales staff is truly empowered to sell more and sell better,” the chief executive said.

Sharaf DG announced the launch of a new Mobile App, a new Website, a new feature of Shop Online and Pick Up in store, a new store at Times Square Centre all at one go.

The new Sharaf DG App is the one stop destination for all electronic needs. Customer can search products, check features, compare products, compare prices with other retailers, check stock availability across Sharaf DG store locations, add a product to the wish list, share with friends and family, show loyalty by adding Air Miles loyalty card and buy products from the comfort of mobile, get home delivery or pick up in-store. The store boasts of one of the biggest Gaming Walls in Middle East a real treat for customers who love Gaming.

Sharaf DG has also introduced a new concept of DG @ Business a Retail to Business, initiative which will serve the growing needs of small and medium sized businesses.

abdulbasit@khaleejtimes.com


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