A Kiwi-made app called Staccar which uses augmented reality (AR) to help retailers and restaurateurs visualise in-store elements before implementing them, has been acquired by an American company.
Staccar, created by Christchurch-based software developer, Smudge, makes it easy to accurately visualise and customise in-store merchandising elements — such as drinks fridges, display units, signage and more — by virtually placing them in-situ on phone and tablet screens.
The product dramatically improves the sell-in process for field sales reps, execution managers and visual merchandisers by helping them show and share in-store solutions with customers before they commit.
“Gone are the days of having to imagine what new elements might look like in a retail space. Now, retailers can see it for themselves in a totally immersive and realistic way,” Reuben Bijl, Managing Director of Smudge, says.
“Augmented reality offers tremendous potential to help businesses make better decisions, and Staccar is a perfect example of that.”
“Beyond live visualisation, AR can be used for education, entertainment, communication and collaboration, among many other things.
“The possibilities are endless and this is the kind of work we love doing — to help businesses around the world solve problems using technology. By building better tools in the virtual world, we can help them make better decisions in the real world.”
Under the terms of the acquisition agreement, InContext Solutions buys the underlying technology for Staccar, as well as related apps and services.
Both parties will continue to support the ongoing success of the solution through collaborative development.
“The retail space is grasping for new and innovative business solutions, and we’re excited to be at the forefront of leveraging Augmented Reality capabilities for brands to better visualise merchandising ideas with their retailers. It’s like in-the-moment photo-shopping,” Jenkin Lee, Vice President of Product Management at InContext Solutions, says.
“It takes all of 15 seconds for a field sales rep to remove all guesswork and show a retail manager what a new merchandising setup could look like.”
“InContext Solutions is a world-leading provider of 3D retail simulation software, so to have them buy Staccar is a real show-of-faith and testament to the work we’re doing right here in Christchurch,” Smudge co-founder Toby Vincent says.
“We’re proud of what our team has built and incredibly excited to continue working with InContext Solutions to help take this technology to the next level.”