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Artificial Intelligence in Retail, Part 2: What Retailers Are Doing with AI

Executive Summary

This report is the second in our series looking at the application of artificial intelligence (AI) in retail. In this report, we explore how retailers are applying AI across business functions. We studied 30 retailers to understand how they have implemented AI in their businesses, and found that:

  • The majority of retailers are using AI for supply chain functions, such as inventory management, demand forecasting, automatic replenishment, automated warehouse operations and fulfillment.
  • Out of the 30 retailers we studied, 63% have launched or invested in tech-focused incubators and accelerators.
  • Amazon and Alibaba are leading among the retailers we analyzed in terms of using AI, and their AI applications cover all four quadrants of our CORE framework.
  • Amazon and Alibaba have been actively funding or acquiring startups and firms that create AI applications and hardware.

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