Sainsbury's bets on self-learning logistics platform from Blue Yonder

Supermarket chain Sainsbury's plans to transform its supply chain with the implementation of a new AI-powered 'self-learning' platform from US technology group Blue Yonder. The system promises to improve performance by learning about customer behaviours.

Blue Yonder's end-to-end supply chain platform will allow the retailer to benefit from AI-powered demand forecasting and replenishment capabilities, as well as space management, macro space planning, and management of staff, warehouses and delivery yards. The system will work across more than 2,000 stores trading under the Sainsbury's, Argos, and Habitat brands.

The company expects the system to allow it to respond more quickly to changing customer needs and behaviours. The retailer's in-house Sainsbury's Tech division will work with Blue Yonder to create an autonomous and 'self-learning' supply chain, employing advanced machine learning abilities that are a Blue Yonder speciality. Part of the objective for the programme is to free up human staff for more customer-serving roles, said Sainsbury's.

“We relentlessly seek to improve the way we serve the needs of our customers. Having a predictive, autonomous and adaptive supply chain powered by world class technology products and Sainsbury’s Tech engineering means we can show up for our customers whenever and however they shop with us,” said John Elliott, chief technology officer of retail at Sainsbury’s.

“Our goal is to make AI and ML become key enablers of Sainsbury’s future digital transformation as the company expands its remarkable, trusted, multi brand, multi channel business,” added Blue Yonder executive vice president Mark Morgan. Sainsbury's and Blue Yonder have a longstanding relationship from previous projects.