McDonalds acquires AI firm
Wednesday March 27 2019
Burger giant McDonalds is acquiring an artificial intelligence (AI) company for at least $300 million
The purchase of Dynamic Yield is part of the fast food chains goal of providing a more digitised and personalised service.
It will allow McDonald's digital drive-thru displays to show menu items based on the time of day and weather and display items based on their popularity while recommending additional items.
CEO Steve Easterbrook said: “"With this acquisition, we're expanding both our ability to increase the role technology and data will play in our future and the speed with which we'll be able to implement our vision of creating more personalised experiences for our customers.”
The technology can also gauge how busy a given McDonald's location is and suggest items that are easier to make during peak hours.
It’s expected that the artificial intelligence technology will also be worked into its self-order kiosks and its mobile app.
Raj Badarinath, VP of marketing at personalisation provider RichRelevance, said: ““Tech acquisitions present a paradox. On the one hand, retailers need to invest in tech to stay even with, let alone get ahead of, the competition. On the other hand, tech acquisitions from Retailers can lead to proprietary technology infrastructures that end up hurting a company. McDonald’s is an iconic brand, and this is a bold move for them. Will this work out? Only time will tell. But one thing is clear - Personalization is here to stay, and the chequebooks are coming out to prove it.”