Couger Inc. (Couger), an AI startup based in Tokyo, in a joint development project with its strategic investor partner ITOCHU Corporation and FamilyMart Co., Ltd. (FamilyMart), will provide the virtual human agent (VHA) Rachel to FamilyMart to be deployed in approximately 5,000 stores by the end of fiscal 2023.
The Virtual Human Agent, Rachel, operates on Couger’s human-like AI platform, LUDENS, and is capable of two-way voice communication that is tailored to individual FamilyMart store manager’s attributes and characteristics. This allows store managers to have the optimal information they need on the spot, including those essential for store operations, advice on ordering, and suggestions for visual merchandising. It supports a wide range of management tasks, and together with in-store guidance by the supervisors, will enhance store management capabilities.
As Rachel operates on a tablet device installed in the store, it can be used in the back office as well as on the store floor. This allows Rachel to provide data and suggestions on the sales floor to immediately affect the product lineup display and visual merchandising.
Rachel’s Main Features
- A human-like AI assistant that communicates via voice, facial expressions, and movements, in addition to text and images.
- Encourages desirable actions through optimal information and two-way communication based on the knowledge of individual store statistics and the store manager’s personal attributes.
- Handles large-scale real-time data processing, such as providing suggestions and reference information based on historical data that includes revenues, customer traffic and weather.
- Keep the Store Managers informed of new products, various policies, weekly campaign updates, and reminders of action items that have not yet been executed.
- Enhances store management capabilities in coordination with store guidance by supervisors.
Head office : 6-19-16 Jingumae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo
CEO: Atsushi Ishii
Establishment: December 2006
FamilyMart Co., Ltd.
Head office: msb Tamachi-Tamachi Station Tower S, 9F 3-1-21 Shibaura, Minato-ku, Tokyo
Representative Director and President: Kensuke Hosomi
Establishment: September 1, 1981
Couger is providing and developing LUDENS, which is a human-like AI platform that communicates like a human being. LUDENS comprises “image recognition” for vision, “voice recognition” for hearing, and “game AI” to synthesize a human-like personality and individuality. Our ultimate objective is to use LUDENS to deploy “human-like AI that can get close to people” all over the world.