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Refuel to Install More Self-Checkouts at 10 Stores

C-store chain selects Mashgin’s 3D camera-vision tech
Refuel installs Mashgin self checkout kiosk
Photograph courtesy of Mashgin

Refuel plans to install 15 new Mashgin self-checkout kiosks at 10 convenience stores following a test at five stores in South Carolina, Mississippi and Texas.

Palo Alto, California-based Mashgin is providing the computer-vision-enabled kiosks, which will be installed at the checkout counter to save time, the company said. The kiosks use multiple cameras to create a three-dimensional image of the products placed on a shelf, so barcodes-scanning isn’t required and multiple items can be automatically rung up at once, Mashgin said. Artificial intelligence is involved in the way the devices recognize items. They typically recognize and ring up items in less then one second, Mashgin said.

“The main advantage of computer vision for the customer is in the simplicity and speed,” Jack Hogan, Mashgin senior vice president of strategic partnerships, told CSP. Barcode-scanning-enabled self-checkouts require more effort on the consumers’ part and take longer to record each item, the company said. 

For retailers like North Charleston, South Carolina-based Refuel, which has 217 locations, the kiosks can take the pressure off employees during busy periods and build customer loyalty. Consumers can use their rewards points at the kiosks and pay for fuel, beverages, snacks and other items with credit cards, debit cards, cash or mobile wallets, Mashgin said. 

“Convenience store operators need to create a superior shopping experience to build customer loyalty, and advanced technology is a key component,” Hogan said. Mashgin offers the equipment on a hardware-as-as-service lease basis and provides installation, maintenance and repairs as part of the contract. "If a kiosk doesn’t work properly, Mashgin’s service team can troubleshoot most issues remotely via the support platform," he said.

By keeping their pricebooks up to date and adding new products to the system, retailers can ensure correct product recognition and pricing, Hogan said.

Refuel tested the kiosks in select stores in December 2022 and is exploring the possibility of putting them in more locations, according to the company. “Our mission is to create a great experience for Refuel customers through and through,” said Jon Rier, Refuel’s CFO. “Mashgin offers our customers an additional way to check out that ensure they can get back on the road quickly. At the same time, Mashgin’s self-checkout frees up our store staff to dedicate even more time to dedicating excellent service and support to our customers.”

  • Refuel Operating Co. LLC is No. 40 on CSP’s 2023 Top 202 ranking of U.S. c-store chains by store count.  

By acquiring small chains, Refuel has catapulted from a small company with four or five locations in 2019 to a mid-size convenience-store chain with 2,550 employees in five states. Besides the Refuel brand, it also owns the Double Quick brand of convenience stores.

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