UK supermarket giant Asda has extended its technology partnership with store operations execution software provider Retail Insight to improve stock accuracy across its network.

Asda and Retail Insight conducted a pilot in July 2023 which drew foundational store data from across Asda’s estate.

The retailer has now authorised a full store rollout of Retail Insight’s Inventory Insight – a machine learning-driven software solution that identifies and corrects inaccurate retailer inventory records.

Inventory Insight trained a data model for each of Asda’s stores, leveraging sales and inventory data to detect instances of phantom inventory. It alerts store colleagues to manually validate the stock at the shelf edge and update the inventory file to help drive total store performance and correct inventory accuracy.

In the nine months since deploying Inventory Insight, Retail Insight has removed more than 1.6m units of phantom inventory from Asda’s store estate, delivering a 63-fold return on investment to the retailer. 

Asda’s store network contains 800 locations serving 18m customers every week. This includes supercentres, superstores, supermarkets, Asda Living stores, petrol stations and depots. This significant footprint makes inventory management crucial.

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Inventory inaccuracy is a perennial challenge for grocery retailers, with data from ECR Retail Loss suggesting that 60% of all inventory records are incorrect. Discrepancy between stock records and what inventory is actually available is a major driver of inefficiencies, leading to lost sales and falling margins.

Asda reported a 6.6% growth in total revenues, excluding fuel, amounting to £5.3bn for Q1 FY24.