19 March 2018,
Convenience stores just got a little more convenient, with local grocery franchise Funmaii launching cashless self-checkout stores. Its founder Datuk Brian Wee said the Funmaii brand intended to build a fuss-free and secure cashless ecosystem that fit the increasingly hectic lifestyle of modern consumers.
“As urbanisation continues to complement the development of the country, the resulting lifestyle change fuels the demand for convenience amongst Malaysians. Funmaii merges technological advancements in payment solutions with speed and accessibility; redefining retail convenience,” he added.
The announcement follows the opening of its outlet in Bandar Puteri, Puchong on March 18, the second since opening for business at Sunway Nexis, Kota Damansara in January.
Wee said Funmaii planned to expand its stores and kiosks beyond Malaysia to include Singapore and Indonesia.
“We plan to open around 30 outlets over the next 12 months and ultimately have 100 outlets by 2019,” he said, adding that Funmaii also planned to install 10,000 vending machines in major shopping malls around Malaysia within the next three years.
Funmaii stores sells standard daily necessities and local food, plus a selection of imported snacks from Japan, Korea, Taiwan, and Thailand. However, it defers from typical convenience stores at the checkout – there are no cashiers so customers have to scan their items and pay using Funmaii’s e-wallet app or credit card. There will still be retail assistants should customers need help with finding items or how the system works.
Besides e-wallet capabilities, the Funmaii app also allowed customer to track expenses and redeem rewards in the form of discount vouchers, extra credit and rebates. Each payment requires authorisation with a six-digit password as a security measure. There are three types of convenience stores: Basic, Signature, and Concept.
While Basic is like most convenience stores plus a small seating area, Signature stores would have a chill-out area for small events and Concept stores would partner with various brands to feature products like fashion, beauty and coffee bars.