In Singapore, we love our food, from the cosy heartlander hawker centres, coffee shops (kopitiam), to fast food outlets, cafes and restaurants. We also know about the labour shortage challenges that Singapore food and beverage (F&B) industry face. FZ Digital, a new F&B technology solutions company, is introducing cutting edge automation and robotics technology to Singapore’s F&B industry.
Launched in October 2022, FZ Digital aims to be at the forefront of a robot enhanced F&B workforce while they strive to be the go-to resource for the best F&B technology solutions in Singapore. FZ Digital have partnered with CloudMinds and POSBANK to launch Singapore’s first F&B robotics and smart kiosks, pushing innovation and alleviate Singapore’s F&B labour crisis.
In this partnership, there are 2 AI robots, the Cloud Ginger Lite D Series and smart kiosks that were launched during FHA-HoReCa that took place from 25th to 28th October 2022, as part of the timely solution to address labour woes in the F&B industry and help F&B SMEs to maximise productivity and revenue, while allowing them to provide better customer service experience.
Implementing robotics in F&B establishments is estimated to save between 30%-70% on labour costs for restaurants, with many coming out of prototype phase and able to perform most, if not all of the tasks humans can (1). This will significantly reduce both dependency on human labour and labour costs. Artificial Intelligence (AI) Robots is a fast growing industry projected to be worth USD$4.3 billion globally by 2030 (2).
“The introduction of robotics into F&B is a much-needed step especially in recent times to push innovation and alleviating the many woes of the F&B industry. Manpower issues and labour shortages have become rampant in Singapore and worldwide, with the recovery of many restaurants and F&B outlets from the pandemic dampened by a stark struggle to hire staff. Many who left the country when borders shut have decided to not return, resulting in severe shortage and, consequently, higher costs to obtain and retain labour,” said Chris Tarr, Chief Product Officer of FZ Digital.
FZ Digital: Automating The Future
FZ Digital is automating the future for Singapore’s F&B industry, some might ask who are they, what’s their history? Here is their story:
1DERLIFE Growth, an acquisition company based in Singapore led by principal, Gregory Lee, acquired FoodZaps, a POS software company founded in 2014 with 200 F&B customers in Singapore and 300 in Malaysia. It then launched FoodZaps as FZ Digital, a hardware and software integrated solutions company for the F&B industry. Lee has long believed that manpower challenges for SMEs in Singapore will be one of the greatest challenges and as a result, software and robotics automation solutions market will grow rapidly. 1DERLIFE Growth has plans for additional acquisitions to build scale in the F&B solutions sector.
Forming a new management team for FZ Digital, bringing together Chelsea Chan, previously FoodZap’s co-founder and 8-year industry leader, as Managing Director, and Chris Tarr, a veteran of software and mobile services industry and former executive of Samsung Electronics, as Chief Product Officer. FZ Digital seeks to streamline and revolutionize the way the F&B industry works.
Chris Tarr is a veteran leader of new business and product innovation, with over 15 years of experience at Samsung, who has recently joined FZ Digital as its Chief Product Officer. As Regional Head of Mobile Services and Partnerships at Samsung, Chris brings extensive experience innovating and launching new mobile services across Southeast Asia. He holds an MBA from INSEAD and spent his early career as a senior software architect in numerous startups after graduating from MIT.
Launch of Singapore’s first F&B robotics and smart kiosks
The 2 robotic stock-keeping units (SKUs) that will be officially launched during FHA-HoReCa are the D300 Circular Tray and D311 Square Cabinets automated food delivery robots. Both are equipped with an integrated auto navigation and obstacle system to run stably in complex situations.
The robots used clever localisations and navigation based on 3D semantic map and multiple sensors, they have the ability to perceive their 3D environment to deliver food to diners quickly and safely.
The installation is straightforward and takes places across three phases, namely:
- Syncing the AI platform (the robots) to AI machine learning, programmed with modules to make the robots the first cloud-based robot solution
- Digitally mapping and mirroring the real-time and virtual environment to the prototype to develop, test and train the robots on how to manoeuvre themselves
- Installing and plugging the robots into actual physical environment to run
Based on the cloud communication and algorithm architecture, rapid decision-making and intelligent scheduling is carried out according to the urgency of the task to ensure the orderly operation of multiple robots. By interconnecting with other Internet of Things (IoT) devices such as elevators, access control, turnstiles, and telephones, Ginger Lite can provide accurate delivery services autonomously.
FZ Digital Partnership with CloudMinds and POSBANK
FZ Digital has a partnership with CloudMinds and POSBANK, who are they?
They are the world’s first operator of cloud intelligent robots and has been committed to the implementation of artificial intelligence technology using robots and all types of smart devices.
Utilizing the leading cloud intelligent robot solution, CloudMinds has built a smart cloud platform based on HARIX architecture and will offer a variety of services including smart building, smart security, smart property management, and more.
CloudMinds’ full range of intelligent robots may be deployable in many scenarios such as hospitality, reception, security, patrol, or even as a smart doorman. Therefore, FZ Digital has partnered with CloudMinds to provide robot services to Singapore F&B SMEs.
They are the number one point of sale (POS) and self-service kiosk manufacturing company in Korea and has one of the lowest error rates in the marketplace at 0.5%.
It is also the global leading provider of point of sale (POS) with more than 200 partners in 80 countries worldwide. It continually pushes the boundaries of industry standards with sophisticated design and high-performance products to solve industry needs.
F&B owners in Singapore – Check out FZ Digital
If you are F&B business owner in Singapore, do check out FZ Digital, their AI robots and smart kiosks. Labour is always a big headache and challenge for F&B businesses, implementing technology in areas such as AI robots and smart kiosks might be of great assistance and improvements to your F&B businesses.
* Information and pictures courtesy of FZ Digital and Brand Cellar *
(1) Aaron Allen & Assocites – https://aaronallen.com/blog/restaurant-robotics
(2) Precedence Research – https://www.precedenceresearch.com/artificial-intelligence-robots-market