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Shoptalk Europe 2024 Startup Pitch Competition: Preview—12 Innovators, Four Areas of Retail Disruption

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Coresight Research is an official research partner of Shoptalk Europe 2024, an annual conference that unites retail and e-commerce professionals to discuss the latest trends, innovations and challenges in the retail industry. The conference will take place in Barcelona, Spain, on June 3–5, 2024, and cover five major themes in retail.

On June 3, 2024, the Startup Pitch competition will see 12 early-stage innovators compete to win the Judges’ Choice and Audience Choice awards. The competition will span three sessions in The Diamond track, beginning at 3:25 p.m. Central European Summer Time (CEST; local time of the event). Deborah Weinswig, CEO and Founder of Coresight Research, will emcee the pitch competition as well as serve as lead judge.

In this report, we preview the upcoming Startup Pitch competition, covering its format, judging panel and each participating innovator.

Shoptalk Europe 2024 Startup Pitch Competition: Preview

Event Format and Judging Panel

The Startup Pitch competition at Shoptalk Europe 2024 will comprise two rounds:

  • Round 1—All competitors will present for three minutes on how their innovative technologies are addressing important retail challenges. The judges and audience will rate each presentation, and the six companies that receive the highest aggregate ratings will progress to the next round.
  • Round 2—The finalists will each participate in a more in-depth, five-minute Q&A (question-and-answer) session with all four judges. The judges will re-rate the finalists, and the audience will rate each of them as well.

Finally, Shoptalk Europe will reveal the Judges’ Choice and Audience Choice winners at the end of the session!

Weinswig will be joined by two expert judges:

  • Carolin Wais, Partner at EMEA Ventures, Plug and Play—Since joining Plug and Play in 2019, Wais has led over 50 investments and overseen 150+ investments through the company’s EMEA Innovation Center. Her expertise in fostering innovation and guiding startups through critical growth phases is well-recognized in the industry. This strong background in venture capital and startup incubation makes Wais an invaluable asset to the judging panel.
  • Susan Lin, Partner at Felix Capital—Lin focuses on early-stage investments in technology and digital lifestyle sectors. With over 15 years of experience in venture capital, Lin’s strategic insights and extensive network have been instrumental in scaling numerous startups to global success. Before joining Felix Capital, she held senior roles at major technology firms, where she led initiatives in product innovation and market expansion.

Innovative Solutions Across Four Areas of Retail Disruption

The participating startups satisfy the following selection criteria:

  • Business-to-business (B2B) solution
  • Pre-Series A—funding of less than $8 million
  • Founded since 2018
  • Scalable—addresses a major retail challenge or opportunity
  • Highly differentiated—unique or highly differentiated technology or business model

Coresight Research categorizes the 12 participating startups into four areas of retail disruption, as detailed below.

1. Analytics and Insights

This category comprises startups that help businesses enhance decision-making processes and operational efficiency through analytics and insights.

Startups: Carbon Maps, Dragonfruit AI, Rapid Delivery Analytics

2. Artificial Intelligence (AI)

This category comprises startups that offer AI solutions for purposes such as personalization, customer service, product data management and fashion design.

Startups: Anam.ai, Guac, Pixyle AI, PSYKHE AI, Raspberry AI

3. Customer Engagement and Loyalty

This category comprises startups that focus on improving customer engagement, loyalty and satisfaction.

Startups: Loyalty Games, Pi-xcels, Veesual

4. Retail Operations

This category comprises startups that offer solutions to optimize retail operations, including returns management and customer engagement.

Startups: Elyn

Figure 1. Shoptalk Europe 2024 Startup Pitch: 12 Innovators Across Four Areas of Retail Disruption

Source: Coresight Research


The Competing Innovators

We introduce each innovator in alphabetical order below.


  • Presenter at Shoptalk Europe: Caoimhe Murphy, Co-Founder & CEO
  • Area of Disruption: AI
  • Year Founded: 2024
  • Headquarters: London, UK
  • Download the Innovator Profile for Anam.ai here.

Anam.ai specializes in developing photo-realistic, multi-lingual digital personas to improve online shopping experiences. With the help of AI, these personas are able to act genuine and natural, as if the user is speaking with an actual human. Additionally, the personas are capable of understanding both verbal and nonverbal cues and reacting in less than a second.

With Anam.ai, companies can create digital personas that can be used across a wide variety of scenarios, including customer support, one-on-one teaching, sales outreach, interview preparation, enablement support, executive coaching, focus group moderation and personalized care. These personas can give a face to brands that is available 24 hours a day, providing new levels of personalization and engagement.

A digital persona from Anam.ai
Source: Company website


Carbon Maps

  • Presenter at Shoptalk Europe: Estelle Huynh, Co-Founder & COO
  • Area of Disruption: Analytics and Insights
  • Year Founded: 2022
  • Headquarters: Paris, France
  • Download the Innovator Profile for Carbon Maps here.

Carbon Maps helps address the significant challenge of fragmented supply chains within the agriculture and food industry, as well as issues around the quantification and mitigation of food companies’ environmental impact. Carbon Maps’ end-to-end platform allows food companies—from producers and manufacturers to food brands and food service companies—to easily measure and control their environmental footprint by providing access to supplier- and farm-level data on agricultural, land-use, water-use and transportation practices, as well as carbon emission levels.

Through its environmental accounting platform—one specifically designed for the food industry—Carbon Maps helps companies meet new environmental disclosure requirements and the growing consumer demand for more sustainable products and practices. So far, Carbon Maps has evaluated the environmental impact of more than 250,000 finished food products, helping reduce the food industry’s environmental footprint.

Carbon Maps’ carbon footprint assessment dashboard
Source: Company website


Dragonfruit AI

  • Presenter at Shoptalk Europe: Amit Kumar, Founder & CEO
  • Area of Disruption: Analytics and Insights
  • Year Founded: 2019
  • Headquarters: Menlo Park, California, US
  • Download the Innovator Profile for Dragonfruit AI here.

Conventional video surveillance systems often fail to provide companies with useful information on a consistent basis. Dragonfruit AI tackles this problem by converting raw video footage into actionable insights, offering users real-time data on queue wait times, foot traffic, customer and staff behavior, and stock levels, among other metrics. This insightful data allows businesses to make informed decisions that can improve their operations and marketing strategies, as well as customer satisfaction.

Additionally, Dragonfruit AI enhances a company’s security and loss prevention practices by utilizing AI and computer vision to identify intrusions, identify risks (such as liquid spills, fires or a customer falling in the store) and detect visible weapons; together, these features enhance safety across all enterprise facilities.

Dragonfruit AI’s video analytics solution
Source: Company website



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  • Presenter at Shoptalk Europe: El Medhi Hachad, Co-Founder & CEO
  • Area of Disruption: Retail Operations
  • Year Founded: 2022
  • Headquarters: Neuilly-Sur-Seine, France
  • Download the Innovator Profile for Elyn here.

Elyn addresses a significant challenge faced by fashion brands and retailers: high return rates due to online orders. According to Coresight Research estimates, in the US, the average return rate for online apparel orders stands at 24.4%, translating to a staggering $38.0 billion in returns in 2023; processing these returns incurs additional, substantial costs, estimated at $25.1 billion for the same year.

Elyn’s solution enables fashion brands and retailers to seamlessly implement online exchange offerings, while simultaneously reducing return-associated costs by addressing the root cause of returns. By enabling customers to exchange items rather than requesting a refund, Elyn reduces a company’s return rates by up to 30%. This solution supports brands—by allowing them to keep earned revenue—and increases customer satisfaction, all while making company operations more efficient.

Different return options provided by Elyn
Source: Company website



  • Presenter at Shoptalk Europe: Euro Wang, Co-Founder & CEO
  • Area of Disruption: AI
  • Year Founded: 2023
  • Headquarters: New York, New York, US
  • Download the Innovator Profile for Guac here.

Predicting grocery sales is often a challenging process due to the variable nature of demand, leading retailers to overpredict (producing food waste) or underpredict (causing empty shelves) necessary inventory levels. In the grocery sector, inventory distortion, which includes food waste and empty shelves, accounts for approximately 7% of a grocer’s annual revenue, according to Guac.

Guac addresses this issue by using AI to precisely predict future grocery store sales, improving companies’ inventory management processes and maximizing profit and customer satisfaction. The innovator’s AI algorithm provides accurate forecasts for every SKU (stock keeping unit) across all store locations, enabling retailers to order the precise inventory quantity needed. Guac states that its platform has reduced food waste in its customers’ stores by 33%—while also reducing their expenses and enabling overall profitability—indicating the effectiveness of its AI-driven approach.

AI-powered SKU-level predictions by Guac
Source: Company website


Loyalty Games

  • Presenter at Shoptalk Europe: Alexander Kokhanovskyy, Co-Founder & Co-CEO
  • Area of Disruption: Customer Engagement and Loyalty
  • Year Founded: 2020
  • Headquarters: Barcelona, Spain
  • Download the Innovator Profile for Loyalty Games here.

Loyalty Games aims to help CPG (consumer packaged goods) companies and grocery retailers who struggle to effectively engage and retain younger consumers alongside their parents. Younger generations, especially Generations Y and Z, who have been raised in the digital world, are no longer responding to traditional loyalty campaigns, such as those based around stickers and toys.

Loyalty Games helps fill this gap with mobile games that also function as loyalty campaigns for CPG companies and grocery retailers, incentivizing engagement and repeat purchases. Their flagship project is Arena TCG, a mobile collectible card game—complete with a built-in augmented reality (AR) component—designed for children aged 6–14. As smartphones are the primary means of communication for young generations, Loyalty Games provides retailers with a unique platform to engage with both young consumers and their parents.

A snapshot of solutions offered by Loyalty Games
Source: Company website



  • Presenter at Shoptalk Europe: Daniel Lim, Founder & CEO
  • Area of Disruption: Customer Engagement and Loyalty
  • Year Founded: 2019
  • Headquarters: Downtown Core, Singapore
  • Download the Innovator Profile for Pi-xcels here.

Traditional paper receipts significantly contribute to paper waste as they are often discarded shortly after use, creating environmental concerns. With its NFC (near field communication)-powered digital receipt solution, Pi-xcels assists retailers in lowering their environmental impact, reducing their paper waste and improving customer engagement in brick-and-mortar stores.

The Pi-xcels solution eliminates the need for paper receipts by providing interactive e-receipts to a shopper’s smartphone. This process not only reduces paper waste but also transforms each transaction into a meaningful interaction, enhancing the customer experience. Retailers can also make data-driven decisions to increase customer satisfaction and their bottom line by using the Pi-xcels platform to gain actionable insights into customer behavior, preferences and demographics.

The NFC-powered receipt solution offered by Pi-xcels
Source: Company website


Pixyle AI

  • Presenter at Shoptalk Europe: Svetlana Kordumova, Founder & CEO
  • Area of Disruption: AI
  • Year Founded: 2019
  • Headquarters: Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • Download the Innovator Profile for Pixyle AI here.

Pixyle AI offers an AI-powered solution that enriches the product data provided by fashion e-commerce brands. The company’s technology helps apparel companies catalog their products faster and correctly tag them with detailed product data, eliminating inefficiencies—such as costly, time-consuming manual data entry and inevitable human error—and providing shoppers with the information they demand.

Pixyle AI’s platform relies on sophisticated technologies, including computer vision and generative AI (GenAI), to auto-tag images and provide product descriptions. With these technologies, the company’s automation cuts costs, saves time and eliminates mistakes, enhancing the accuracy and depth of the product information provided to customers. This, in turn, improves the product discovery process for shoppers, generating more sales.

The product tagging and text generation features provided by Pixyle AI
Source: Company website



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  • Presenter at Shoptalk Europe: Anabel Maldonado, Founder & CEO
  • Area of Disruption: AI
  • Year Founded: 2020
  • Headquarters: New York, New York, US
  • Download the Innovator Profile for PSYKHE AI here.

PSYKHE AI seeks to help retailers optimize their online product discovery processes. Given the vast array of products available online, consumers often struggle to find items that align with their preferences and needs. Additionally, traditional recommendation systems rarely capture individual preferences, causing retailers to miss opportunities to connect with potential buyers, leading to reduced customer engagement, conversion rates and sales.

PSYKHE AI’s solution tackles this issue by leveraging deep-learning models and product information to accurately predict purchasing behavior based on a consumer’s characteristics and traits, such as their values, desires, interests and lifestyles. The company then generates custom rankings of a store’s products for each user, ensuring that the most relevant products are presented to each user. PSYKHE AI’s patented system can precisely match products with the right consumers, enhancing the shopping experience and increasing sales.

Personalized e-commerce product discovery from PSYKHE AI
Source: Company website


Rapid Delivery Analytics

  • Presenter at Shoptalk Europe: Andrey Dyatlov, Co-Founder & CEO
  • Area of Disruption: Analytics and Insights
  • Year Founded: 2021
  • Headquarters: Paris, France
  • Download the Innovator Profile for Rapid Delivery Analytics here.

As the number of mobile-first grocery and convenience delivery apps and platforms—such as Gopuff and UberEats—continues to grow, CPG brands face the significant challenge of measuring their performance across these channels, which, in turn, constrains their ability to make informed decisions and optimize their strategies. Rapid Delivery Analytics (RDA) aims to solve this problem by providing CPG companies with a digital-shelf analytics platform specifically designed for mobile-first delivery services.

Since launching in 2021, RDA’s worldwide coverage has grown quickly—currently, it monitors more than 35 applications across 97 countries. By providing users with region-specific data that is updated daily, RDA closes the data gap for CPG brands, allowing them to learn from their performance in the fast-growing mobile delivery market.

RDA’s dashboard
Source: Company website


Raspberry AI

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  • Presenter at Shoptalk Europe: Cheryl Liu, Founder & CEO
  • Area of Disruption: AI
  • Year Founded: 2022
  • Headquarters: New York, New York, US
  • Download the Innovator Profile for Raspberry AI here.

Raspberry AI uses GenAI to streamline and improve the fashion design process, addressing the difficulties created by conventional design processes. Traditionally, the fashion design process is time-consuming, costly and labor-intensive as it requires designers to manually visualize trends, fabrics, trims, prints, stitch details and silhouettes. Raspberry AI revolutionizes this process by offering a GenAI-powered design assistant, allowing designers to easily visualize concepts and refresh designs with just a few words.

According to Raspberry AI, it can help fashion designers reduce the time and sample cost of each design by three to five hours and 30%, respectively. Moreover, the company’s AI models are individually trained to fit the specific design standards and style of each brand, guaranteeing designs that are both personalized and brand-consistent.

AI-powered product design with Raspberry AI
Source: Company website



  • Presenter at Shoptalk Europe: Maxime Patte, Co-Founder & CEO
  • Area of Disruption: Customer Engagement and Loyalty
  • Year Founded: 2020
  • Headquarters: Paris, France
  • Download the Innovator Profile for Veesual here.

Veesual is enhancing the online shopping experience by leveraging the power of image generation to create “augmented shopping experiences.” The company addresses the challenges found in the traditional online shopping journey—namely, the lack of visualization around how clothes will look on specific shoppers or how different items will look when worn together.

Veesual offers a variety of solutions, including “Look Inspiration,” which showcases how one piece of clothing looks across different styles; “Mix & Match Styling,” which lets shoppers create outfits from various clothing items; and “Switch Model,” which lets shoppers choose a model that resonates with them, including “models of different morphologies, ages and skin tones.” These functions allow buyers to better envision themselves in specific offerings, leading to more informed purchases and satisfied customers.

A group of women wearing purple shirts Description automatically generated

Personalized e-commerce features provided by Veesual
Source: Company website