Gatik, which specializes in autonomous middle-mile logistics, plans to collaborate with The Kroger Company to transport customer orders within the grocer’s Dallas-area distribution network through a new multi-year agreement.
Their collaboration will include Gatik’s medium-duty autonomous box trucks transporting fresh, “customer-favorite” products from a Kroger customer fulfillment center in Dallas to multiple retail locations, the companies said. Gatik’s autonomous trucks feature cold chain-capable, 20-ft. boxes designed to transport ambient, refrigerated, and frozen goods “quickly, safely, and efficiently.” The partnership involves consistent, repeated delivery runs multiple times per day, seven days per week, across Kroger’s Dallas distribution network, helping to unlock the advantages of autonomous delivery for Kroger’s customers.
These advantages include increased speed and responsiveness when fulfilling e-commerce orders, reduced costs, and dedicated capacity across the supply chain’s middle mile, Gatik said. Operations are expected to launch in Q2.
“Kroger’s commitment to redefining service levels for its customers through innovative technology meant that our collaboration came together very quickly,” Gautam Narang, Gatik co-founder and CEO, said in a news release. “We’re deeply familiar with operating our autonomous fleet within the Dallas ecosystem, and we’re very excited to bring that experience to support Kroger in its mission to reshape the future of goods delivery.”
Gatik’s autonomous middle-mile solution will help support Kroger by meeting customers’ immediate needs, whether they shop online or in-store, providing access to goods “faster and more reliably” than ever before, the companies added.
Since launching commercial operations in 2019, Gatik has delivered half a million customer orders.
“We are so excited to see Gatik trucks starting to deliver groceries throughout our Dallas division,” said Raúl Bujalil, Kroger VP of supply chain strategy and technology enablers. “These autonomous box trucks will help us continue our commitment to creating a seamless shopping experience, where customers can access their favorite fresh foods, with zero compromise on value or convenience.”