OSA DC, or Optimal Shelf Availability Decentralized, is looking to use AI and the Blockchain to solve retail’s biggest headache.
One of the biggest risks for a retail business is overstocking. Just think about how much money is wasted everyday when a grocery store has to throw away huge amounts of food and beverages that aren’t used.
Through an easy to use platform with a built-in digital assistant, OSA DC is looking to solve this for businesses as well as to improve the overall shopping experience for customers, via its digital assistant.
The platform will serve as a Blockchain-based stocking system for retailers, which reportedly means that it will include all information related to inventories, individual orders, and overall product stock on a store by store and company by company, basis. It’s reasonable to assume that each implementation of the system will involve each company’s data being kept private as anything else would raise a multitude of legal issues.
The digital assistant will run in connection with the overall platform, serving the specific purpose of giving customers and retailers access to all information on the origin of products, their ingredients, their prices, and even all of the locations that each product has passed through.
Overall, OSA DC hopes that their digital assistant will change the entire retail industry through truly shifting the purchasing power back to the individual consumer.
This is where a connection exists between OSA DC and existing non-Blockchain projects, especially in the grocery niche.
One specific example would be the shift that Whole Foods has been undergoing. Their most recent stocking system, which has been called OTS or order-to-shelf, was meant to reduce unnecessary inventory, reduce costs, and allow employees to spend more of their time helping customers.
One report claimed that the system did noticeably improve food spoilage but that it also made the stocking of each individual store even more difficult. Some customers and employees even claimed that certain stores had several empty shelves for weeks at a time.
In addition to this misfortune, at the point of these reports, Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods had already been completed more than six months beforehand. Therefore, it’s somewhat logical to state that Amazon hasn’t really figured out an answer to overstocking, either.
The fact is, Amazon and Whole Foods are not alone. As of now, no grocery store or retailer has taken on a Blockchain-based stocking system at full-scale.
OSA DC’s future platform appears promising due to its decentralization and due to its claims that it is based on an existing platform which has already generated $1 million in revenue. On top of this, OSA DC states confidently that this product has already helped companies like Danone, LOréal, Coca-Cola, and several others to increase their sales by an average of 5.4 percent. It’s therefore reasonable to state that they aim for their Blockchain platform to do the same or better.
It should also be made clear before going any further that this existing platform was termed a “hybrid,” which means that it wasn’t a completely decentralized product. OSA DC’s current product, therefore, is not exactly new but can be thought of as more like the next, decentralized iteration of something that’s already been running.
It’s also important not to forget the role of AI in this. With OSA DC’s digital assistant, consumers who use the network to find product information and therefore purchase products, will be rewarded in crypto coins. Any AI system needs to be fed training data and this is exactly what this is. In other words, real-time data about what customers are looking for and how much they are looking for it, will allow the system to intelligently learn what to stock and when to stock it.
In the end, the promise of better sales numbers as well as an intelligent digital assistant that will learn to be as efficient as possible over time, is quite interesting. When this is taken into account together with the fact that a Blockchain is immutable, the idea could even be said to be revolutionary. Even so, as with any product, it all depends on the execution and the education of all of the intended stakeholders. In other words, if customers and companies don’t understand how it can help them and how they can use it to their advantage, then there’s no chance of this succeeding.
By: BGN Editorial Staff