Sofia Locks offers comprehensive technology solutions for creating flexible spaces: co-working, co-living and innovative solutions in the housing market. Sofia Locks’ access control solutions are designed for maximum flexibility and security, making the environment smart and easily manageable. Cloud-native design allows us to meet the needs of different environments, both business, such as offices and coworking, and residential, such as co-living, co-housing, social housing, and student housing.
We believe that technology should be a natural part of the environment and society, simplifying people’s lives and making spaces and resources more accessible and secure. When this is accomplished, the technology disappears and can truly be considered smart. To achieve this goal, we develop synergies with companies that identify with our same values. WIB (Warehouse in a Box) is a leading company in the field of smart lockers (Smart Locker) and evolved vending machines (Smart Store). WIB aims to improve people’s lived experience, both in residential and business settings, through the use of technology solutions for delivering and receiving goods.
The digital DNA of the two companies allows for a perfect synergy, Sofia Locks Cloud API integration enables a smooth and easy technology experience. Using cloud technology, users will be able to interact with smart lockers via their smartphones, checking their availability and managing shipments themselves. In this way, users will be able to access the authorized gates and pick up the received parcel through a single App, moreover, they will be able to receive notifications about the status of the shipment in real time, at any time. In this way, the digital and the physical merge, break down friction by making all touchpoints fluid and create a seamless solution.
In order to best tell the story of the collaboration between Sofia Locks and WIB, we interviewed Alfonso Correale, CEO of WIB, who gave us a comprehensive overview of the existing synergies.
Hi Alfonso, could you tell us what was your path? What brought you to WIB?
My first contact with WIB was in 2015-I was working for a multinational company but was already quite interested in the startup world. In this regard, WIB had struck me as a particularly vital startup: I immediately liked its ambitious goal of innovating the vending world. So I contacted its founder and went to evaluate his installation, which, at the time, was located at Expo 2015 in Milan. The possibility of creating a bridge between the digital and physical worlds seemed really interesting to me, I also wanted a change in work, something different from multinational corporations, and so in 2016 I got on board and started my adventure with WIB.
How did WIB come about?
WIB was founded in 2013 through a very successful crowdfunding campaign, €600,000 was raised, thanks to which the first machines were made.
We have come a long way since then, but our goal remains the same: to innovate and evolve the world of automated sales and delivery systems to create a true “bridge” between the digital and physical worlds.
This has led us to the management of not only vending machines but also Smart Lockers that are coordinated by the same platform.
What does WIB deal with?
WIB is a manufacturer of innovative solutions with smart cabinets and vending machines at its core governed by a flexible platform that can meet a wide range of needs.
Our offer focuses on two main proposals: the first is the Smart Locker, smart lockers thanks to which, in the case of receiving parcels and orders, the recipient does not have to be present at the time of delivery and can make the pickup at any time, quickly and in complete autonomy, with the convenience of receiving alerts and digital notifications.
This solution is also used by canteens, companies or large retailers because thanks to Smart Food and Grocery Lockers (refrigerated cabinets), food is kept fresh or frozen for a long time under ideal conditions.
The second solution is Smart Stores, evolved vending machines that enable 4.0 shopping experiences in which digital and analog coexist at their best, offering benefits to everyone involved, from shopkeepers to those who deliver or refill products, from shoppers to the facilities that host the devices, such as shopping malls or large chains.
Among the strengths we are credited with, the proprietary cloud-based platform definitely deserves special attention., which features an all-in-one control dashboard that allows for better control and management of all aspects of the proposed solutions (temperature management, operation of the handling system, control and updating of the product catalog, access control, etc.) and the ability to integrate our software as best we can with that of customers and partners, quickly arriving at solutions with customizable features that ensure a truly complete and satisfying overall experience.
How did the collaboration between Sofia Locks and WIB come about?
Alessandro Nacci, the CEO of Sofia Locks, and I met through a meeting opportunity created by Polihub, the Innovation Park & Startup Accelerator of the Politecnico di Milano, which I thank.
It was immediately obvious how we were on the same wavelength professionally: in fact, we found many commonalities between WIB and Sofia Locks that led us to consider a collaboration between the two.
In fact, we share several aspects that we consider fundamental to the corporate culture and proposal to the market, so we felt that all the prerequisites for successful cooperation existed.
How does the collaboration between Sofia Locks and WIB work?
When we carry out the installation of a Smart Locker (which can be in a business, an apartment building, an airport… in short, In all situations where this type of solution can be an advantage for users) we offer the option of integrating Locker access into Sofia Locks’ Luckey platform or integrating Sofia Locks functionality along with WIB functionality within the client’s own or third-party app.
In this way, to all the features offered by WIB we add those related to an access control 4.0, an aspect that is increasingly appreciated and therefore required in Smart Locker installations.