McDonald’s is the largest fast food chain in the world and knows that fast service is critical to its success. With that in mind, the company reached an agreement to purchase Apprente, a startup that uses artificial intelligence to optimize service through drive thru.
Able to recognize different languages and accents, Apprente’s voice solution should help the company to streamline service and make fewer mistakes when ordering. In its announcement, McDonald’s stated that the goal is to make the drive thru faster, simpler and more accurate.
Founded two years ago in Mountain View, California, Apprente is already testing its technology in some units of the chain. With the acquisition, the trend is that it will also be taken to the company’s kiosks and application.
The deal will get the startup team to help form McD Tech Labs, a new group that will be integrated into McDonald’s technology team. The company also wants to hire engineers, data scientists and other specialists for the department.
McDonald’s did not disclose transaction values, but once again showed interest in investing in technology. Apprente is the third purchase announced by the fast food chain in 2019.
In March, the company bought Dynamic Yield, which has a solution aimed at encouraging customers to buy more through the drive thru. For this, she personalizes the menu according to the day, time, restaurant capacity and the most common orders.
The startup cost $ 300 million, according to CNBC, and became McDonald’s biggest acquisition in two decades. Still this year, the company bought 9.9% of Plexure, which specializes in engaging customers in purchases by application. The deal cost $ 3.7 million.