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Case Title:

Piggly Wiggly Carolina’s tryst with ‘Pay By Touch’

Publication Year : 2005

Authors: Chithra Gopal

Industry: Innovation and New Product Development

Region:USA

Case Code: IPD0050B

Teaching Note: Not Available

Structured Assignment: Not Available

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Abstract:
The case deals with the deployment of biometric payments in Piggly Wiggly Carolina Company (PW), an American supermarket chain. This largest employee-owned, privately held retail company in South Carolina is leading the movement towards a new way of shopping with its Pay By Touch scheme. The pilot phase, covering four stores, ends successfully, satisfying both the convenience-minded customers and cost-conscious management. The scheme helps in faster check-outs, more payment options and highly secure transactions. But will the company-wide roll out of the scheme covering 120 stores be successful? With questions being raised by human rights activists on potential abuses in future the situation demands sensitive handling of customer relations by the company. The case can be used to discuss the potential impact of biometric payments on both the retailer and its customers and lessons learnt by a first mover in implementing a relatively new technology.

Pedagogical Objectives:

  • To understand how biometric payment was deployed in Piggly Wiggly
  • To discuss the impact of the payment system.

Keywords : Supermarket; Electronic payment; Cost cutting; Self service; Payby touch; Biometric payments; Innovation Management Case Study; Promotions; Convenience minded customers

Contents:

  • Introduction
  • Piggly Wiggly – an overview
  • 'Pay By Touch' at PW
  • Lessons learnt
  • Future challenges

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