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Lidl signs agreement with 3D visualisation company

German supermarket Lidl has signed a four-year deal with a UK technology firm specialising in 3D visualisation and augmented reality (AR).

Lidl’s national development team is set to work closely with Yorkshire-based CGI and animation studio Virtual Resolution as it continues its expansion in the UK.

The framework agreement, first reported by Prolific North, will see Virtual Resolution help the retailer’s national development team to create 3D visualisations and CGIs specifically to help in areas such as public engagement and the planning process.

Lidl has reportedly been working with the tech company on a number of projects over the past two years around CGIs, drone photography and photo montages.

Tim Power, managing director of Virtual Resolution, commented: “We have one of the UK's largest in-house teams of specialist creative artists with a wealth of experience in CGI and 3D visualisation, and so are perfectly placed to provide Lidl with the support they need as they look to grow the business in the UK.”

Despite not offering a full online shopping service in the UK, Lidl has upped its consumer-facing technology development in recent weeks with the launch of a Facebook Messenger chatbot to advise customers on wine choices.

The retailer called its sommelier chatbot ‘Margot’, and the artificial intelligence-supported service can advise users on the best bottle of wine to buy based on their food choices. By asking Margot what wine works with a certain dish, it will provide the best option.

As well as wine pairing advice, the chatbot allows consumers to ask which fine wine Lidl sells, in addition to general wine questions, and take part in a Wine Quiz, which tests user’s general knowledge of the subject.

Alex Murray, digital director at Lidl UK, remarked: “We hope this service – along with the existing in-store and online information we already provide – encourages customers to discover the perfect wine from our curated range.”

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