Waitrose have opened their flagship cashless store in TV network Sky’s head office building, Sky Central.
The store, at just 1400 square feet, is the second smallest Waitrose in the UK, but will cater to over 3500 staff at the TV giant’s headquarters.
It is the first cashless store to open in the UK, meaning that customers can only pay with smartphones or credit cards, through self-service checkouts.
This store is pioneering the way that many supermarkets are predicted to go, replacing physical cash transactions with purely digital ones. This follows the trend announced by the Payments Council in 2015, when cashless payments overtook physical ones for the first time ever, with 52% of all transactions being made digitally.
The John Lewis partnership, who own the grocery chain, met with a number of Sky employees earlier this year, to determine which products they would prefer to see in the new store. The shortlist includes to go sandwiches, wraps, and sushi, as well as evening meals, celebration cakes, fresh flowers, fresh bread, and croissants, as well as cupboard staples.
The store is set to create 20 new jobs, as part of the John Lewis partnership.
Waitrose Director for Convenience, Jackie Wharton, said, “Opening on the Sky campus is an exciting opportunity for us to respond to how customers wish to shop in this flagship workplace setting. Our convenience model is now more flexible than ever, especially as payment methods and ranges continue to evolve, so we’ll look forward to exploring other opportunities like this in the future.”
The Director of Property Service Group at Sky, Nick Green, added: “We’re thrilled to welcome Waitrose to our campus in Osterley. Our goal is to make Sky a great place to work for all our colleagues to work and having such easy access to this new shop will be a huge benefit.”