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Report: AI Holds $300 Billion of Untapped Opportunity
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Report: AI Holds $300 Billion of Untapped Opportunity

New study outlines how vast sums can be made by correct utilisation of AI

A new study from the Capgemini Research Institute has dispelled some of the mystique around AI’s value to retail businesses and revealed a path to tangible growth opportunities.

Capgemini calculates a $300 billion+ opportunity for those retail companies that are able to scale and expand the scope of their existing deployments.

However, it is not straightforward – the report also found that just 1% of use cases by retailers have achieved this level of deployment today.

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The study, looked at 400 global retailers that are implementing AI use cases at different stages of maturity – a group that represents 23% of the global retail market by revenue.

The study further included an extensive analysis of public data from the world’s largest 250 retailers, by revenue.

Comparing this data to 2017 equivalents, it delivers a series of reality checks that not only show how far AI has come in terms of concrete returns, but how much value it can deliver if retailers begin to prioritize less complex deployments, and diversify their focus.

The main insights from the report include:

  • Over a quarter (28%) of retailers are deploying AI today: The research finds a significant increase of AI deployments from 2017 (17%), and a seven-fold increase from 2016 (4%).
  • AI fuels some job creation, negligible losses so far: 71% of retailers say AI is creating jobs today, with over two-thirds (68%) of the jobs being at a senior level (coordinator level or above). Meanwhile, 75% declared that AI has not replaced any jobs in their organization so far. Those who did say jobs have been cut put the number at 25 or lower.
  • AI’s impact: lower customer complaints, higher sales: Retailers are now remarkably aligned on the impact AI is likely to have on customer relations and sales: While expectations have declined from 2017, nevertheless, the report finds that 98% of respondents using AI in customer-facing functions expect the number of customer complaints to reduce by up to 15%, while 99% expect AI to increase sales by up to 15%. This marks a significant change from 2017, where respondents gave widely contrasting expectations from zero, to more than 15%, to “don’t know”. In both business cases, zero respondents reported that they could not quantify AI’s benefit.

In order to calculate the clear opportunities for future growth, such as the benefits expected and the feasibility of implementation, the Capgemini Research Institute analyzed 43 working use cases for AI.

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