Yoox Net-A-Port Group recently ran a hackathon, inviting teams of developers from the retailer’s London and Bologna offices, to apply machine learning to retail.
Roger Mitchell, product and platform director, Yoox Net-a-Porter Group (YNAP), says: “There are elements of AI that represent a leap in faith, but others elements are proven. We know some of the APIs are pretty mature, and have been proven for customers in financial institutes, where they can improve customer care by reading correspondence or they can understand tone of voice to evaluate customer sentiment."
But the technology still needs to be adapted for retail.
Other instances of using startups to hack the future of retail include the IC Tomorrow Future Retail Contest, which pits startups against each other to solve common retail problems.