Mobile shopping provider Airtag has developed a mobile wallet service for international grocery chain Distribuidora Internacional de Alimentacion SA, allowing customers to order and pay for groceries prior to pickup.

The companies are calling the service "Diadiscount" because it provides a discount price for those who use the mobile wallet. Shoppers retrieve their orders from a refrigerated locker inside the Dia stores.

"This is the first time a mobile wallet connects the consumer with grocery storage in a refrigerated locker," says Airtag CEO Jeremie Leroyer. As part of the ordering process, the consumer is given a locker code through the mobile device to use to access the purchase.

Airtag is currently testing the Diadiscount mobile wallet in Paris, where it is based, and plans to eventually roll out the service in all Dia locations throughout Europe, Asia and Latin America. Dia is based in Las Rozas, Spain.

The development of Diadiscount continues Airtag's focus on fast-food and grocery chains with its Airshop mobile commerce platform.

Nearly a year ago, Airtag began providing similar pre-order and pre-pay systems to Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurants in the U.K. It also handles some mobile payment initiatives for McDonald's locations throughout France.

Airtag is again showing that a smaller mobile wallet provider is better off focusing on a niche market, says industry analyst Todd Ablowitz, president of Centennial, Colo.-based Double Diamond Group, LLC.

"Plus, this idea is very innovative and something that may have good appeal," Ablowitz says. "But it requires a substantial change in customer behavior, which always has to be considered and can be quite daunting."

The Diadiscount arrangement will likely attract attention from consumers in big cities or densely populated areas, Ablowitz adds.

Dia customers can download the Dia-branded mobile app for Android and Apple smartphones, Leroyer says. The customer can browse a product catalog of more than 1,300 items, review ingredients and see other information.

The consumer builds a grocery basket on the app and checks out in one click, as payment is linked to a pre-enrolled payment card, Leroyer says. The order, including the customer's preferred pickup time, is sent to a computer or tablet in the store that allows a clerk to prepare the order and store it in the locker prior to sending the locker code back to the customer's phone.

The customer then punches in the code number on a keypad at the locker site to open the designated locker.

Dia's project demonstrates how grocery chains can use a white-label mobile wallet with their own brand to improve the experience in their stores, Leroyer says.

"The grocer wants a new marketing tool and a new way to engage with the customer, and the mobile wallet is really a confirmation of that," Leroyer adds.

Leroyer plans to eventually bring Airtag's mobile wallet product to the U.S. market.

"This is a really new service, so it is hard to say how customers will respond to the mobile-to-locker service, but the positive responses in the early testing are encouraging," Leroyer says.

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