McDonald’s acquires AI firm Apprente to change drive-thru experience
Category: #technology  By Pranali Mehta  Date: 2019-09-11
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McDonald’s acquires AI firm Apprente to change drive-thru experience
  • This is McDonald’s second acquisition this year, earlier this year it acquired Dynamic Yield, an online personalization startup for over $300 million.
  • This acquisition would reduce wait times and could enable restaurants to function with smaller staffs. Apprente would also enable kiosk and mobile ordering for the company.

McDonald’s Corporation, the renowned American fast food company founded in 1940 and headquartered at Chicago, Illinois, reportedly announced the acquisition of Apprente, a technology startup which builds conversational agents that are able to automate voice-based food ordering in several languages.

Apprente’s expertise appear to be an ideal fit for the fast food company’s drive-thrus. In fact, McDonald’s has already been testing the tech at select locations to make food ordering experience simpler, faster and more accurate.

McDonald’s stated that the technology could also be used in kiosk and mobile ordering. Besides reducing wait times, this move could possibly enable restaurants to function with smaller staffs.

The company is increasingly seeking tech acquisitions to reinvent its fast-food experience. Earlier this year, McDonald’s procured Dynamic Yield, an online personalization startup for over $300 million, with an aim of designing a drive-thru experience that is customized based on factors such as restaurant traffic and weather. McDonald’s also invested in Plexure, a mobile app company.

Currently, the company is planning to double down its investments in technology by creating a new group named McD Tech Labs based in Silicon Valley, with Apprente team coming onboard as one of the founding members of the group, and Itamar Arel, co-founder of Apprente being appointed as vice president of the McD Tech Labs.

McDonald’s stated that it would extend the team at McD Tech Labs by recruiting more data scientists, engineers as well as other technology experts.

Apprente, founded 2 years ago in 2017, has raised a total investment of $4.8 million from various investors, including StageOne Ventures, AME Cloud Ventures, Morado Ventures, Point72 Ventures, Pathbreaker Ventures and Greylock Partners.

Financial terms pertaining to the acquisition of Apprente acquisition deal were not disclosed by the company.

Source credit: https://techcrunch.com/2019/09/10/mcdonalds-acquires-apprente/

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Pranali Mehta

Pranali Mehta    

Pranali Mehta boasts of over three years of experience as a content writer. Having completed her graduation in chemical engineering, she worked as safety & environment associate in a chemical company for a year. Harnessing her passion for writing however, Pranali deci...

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