Retailers in Japan are exploring innovative ways to make shopping more convenient.
Drone deliveries to support the elderly
Lawson has teamed up with Rakuten to offer drone deliveries in Minamisoma. The town has many elderly residents who have difficulty getting around. The service will run for six months before the companies decide whether to make it permanently available.
Nearly all of the town’s 71,000 residents were forced to evacuate due to radioactive fallout from the 2011 Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster. Many of the residents have since returned after the evacuation order was lifted in July 2016.
Lawson already operates a mobile store in the area…
A mobile Lawson store operates two days a week in the area, but it has a limited range of products. Rakuten is also working on a service that would use drones to deliver medications to residents.