ConZoomers -- Building a Digital Future for Independent Grocers

The Covid-19 pandemic caused massive changes in the everyday lives of Americans and of the grocery stores who provided them with provisions. Team ConZoomers decided to take on these challenges and research how Rosie could build a digital future for independent grocers during a pandemic and beyond.

March 03, 2021
• by
Kim Brower
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The Covid-19 pandemic caused massive changes in the everyday lives of Americans and of the grocery stores who provided them with provisions. For the first time in a generation, panic buying became a reality. Out of stock conditions caused anxiety and hording as people quarantined within their homes. Online grocery ordering increased by over 40%, prompting grocery stores to rapidly change how they sold their products. Larger chain retailers had already begun developing their online grocery services. But what about the independent grocers? How would they compete in this brave, new world?

Rosie, a New York-based grocery technology company, had been providing a “digital lifeline” to independent grocers for years, supporting them in their quest to be competitive in online grocery services. But, in 2020, the number of consumers who were new to the online shopping space skyrocketed, setting forth a wave of challenges for Rosie and the independent grocers they served.

Team ConZoomers decided to take on these challenges and research how Rosie could build a digital future for independent grocers during a pandemic and beyond. Elizabeth Alvarez-Sell (Ajinomoto Foods), Lori Brown (Post Consumer Brands), Chelsea Cubero (QFC-Kroger Company), Chris Denisac (Oil Dri Corporation), Jiashu Du (99 Ranch/Tawa Supermarkets) and Sona Samvelian (Food 4 Less-Kroger Company) met with the Rosie team and dove into the e-commerce grocery delivery space. The results were presented to USC faculty, students, and industry professionals at the Inaugural Capstone Presentations event hosted by the Master of Science, Food Industry Leadership program in the fall of 2020.

See their work here: ConZoomers Presentation 2020