Mobile Market Box m²box

Reaching Customers to Open Up New Markets

The current development of the food retailing market in Germany is characterised by a severe competition. The aim of innovative retail dealers should be to open up new markets by means of modern technologies and alternative sales channels.

Potential customers are

  • inhabitans of communities or urban quarters without shopping facilities as well as
  • employees at large office buildings or factories without shopping facilities nearby.
The classical catalogue selling or the modern eCommerce provide the basis to reach the customers mentioned above. The currently used mode of delivery in the form of door-to-door services requires high personnel expenses which hampers the further development of distributing goods of daily consumer needs by means of catalogue selling or eCommerce.


The m²box was developed by Fraunhofer IVI for a largely self-sufficient and cost-effective delivery of in advance ordered goods of daily consumer needs.

Technical Data

  • trailer with twin axis with a gross vehicle weight of 2.5 t and a total length of 5.7 m (can be transported with a van)
  • 20 boxes for frozen goods and non frozen goods (each box has two cases) and 14 large boxes (i. e. for crates)
  • cooling by means of eutectic plates
  • self-sufficient energy supply by means of accumulators for 60 h
  • acceptance of empties (deposit bottles) possible
  • payment with EC-Card – on-line testing using a radio link (GSM)

One accumulator charge lasts for 6 days at 10 h a day by using an automatic switch-off-device. Thus a high flexibility and mobility of the system is guaranteed.

The m²box can be parked on puplic roads, sidewalks or in pedestrian zones as well as at car parks.

There is an integrated operational terminal at the rear end of the trailer for communcation with personnel and customers. The operational terminal is easy to handle and robust.

Operational Concept

  • Selection of a suitable location of a m²box and of an offered time frame for placing the goods,
  • Picking of goods by retailer,
  • Distribution of the orderings to regionally spreaded m²boxes,
  • Placing of the orderings into separated boxes.
    Transfer of m²boxes between locations with poorer demand.
  • Customer identification with customer number (ID) and payment with EC-Card.
  • Withdrawal of the ordered goods after approved payment.
  • Returning of empties (deposit bottles).


The m²boxes can be used

  • to supply people in areas lacking in infrastructure,
  • to serve employees at large office buildings or factories without shopping facilities nearby.

In addition to the delivery of in advance ordered goods of daily consumer needs the m²boxes can be used to deposit cleaned clothes, repaired shoes or parcels etc.