JD Central plans unmanned retail shop debut in 2020

JD Central triggers an e-commerce war in Thailand aiming to be the leader in online retail by three years with a plan to launch an automated retail store.

According to Vincent Yang, CEO of JD Central, the joint venture between two giant retail firms of Central Group and JD.com from China, which announced the official launch of www.jd.co.th on September 28 in Thailand, the company will bring technology from China to Thailand to changing the world of retail business here.

The company plans to deploy the autonomous warehouse robots to replace manpower and substantially cut overhead costs. The robots will enable the company to maximize existing space by 500%. It will also utilize the autonomous delivery vehicle which was developed to serve the high density cities. It will start with a trial run in 2019 which must be approved by the regulations of Thailand.

The company is now selecting a location to open the unmanned physical retail store in Thailand which will be functioned with facial recognition technology. Since the company was opened in June, the JD Central online orders have increased 15 times, which 80% of customers accessing it via mobile platform.

JD Central has increased its employees from 16 to be 1,000 people within 12 months. More than 600 employees are responsible for warehouse and delivery operation. In Bangkok, the products can be delivered on the next day. JD Central will expand its existing two warehouses to five by the end of this year which will enable the company to more efficiently deal with inventory and support the direct sales products. It also plans to offer the same day delivery service in Bangkok by this year which will cover more than 25 million customers throughout Bangkok and surrounding areas by 2020.