The shop closures are reportedly due to a technical failure that has caused the tills and payments systems to stop working.
“There are currently problems with the tills in a number of DM stores due to a software error,” Christopher Werner, the CEO of DM, told Bild. According to Werner, however, the cause of the issue is known and is currently being fixed.
The issue has affected numerous branches of the drugstore all across Germany, including Berlin Friedrichstraße, Berlin Lichterfelde, Munich Sonnenstraße and all DM shops in Freiburg.
On Twitter, customers posted pictures of closed branches in their neighbourhoods.
One Freiburg resident took a photo of a local DM with a notice pinned to the door apologising for the issue.
“Dear customers, due to a checkout failure and the fact that we cannot cash out your purchases, we are currently unable to open our shop,” the notice read. “The specialist department is working flat out to find a solution! We ask for your understanding.”
— Michael Ummels (@trassenfinder) June 14, 2022
According to the same Twitter user, branches of Rossmann have also been affected by the issue, but these reports have not yet been confirmed.
Focus Online reported that some of the shops had had trouble connecting to the internet.
The checkout issue at DM isn’t the first major disruption to retail businesses this year.
At the end of May, an issue with a popular brand of card machine meant that thousands of shops across Germany were unable to take card payments for days on end.
The technical failure forced supermarkets such as Aldi and Edeka and other retailers, including DM, to switch to cash-only purchases while they waited for an important software update.
DM only managed to resolve the issue on June 3rd, having been without card payments in several branches since May 24th.
The repeated technical issues have cast Germany’s attempts at digitalisation in an unflattering light.
Despite significant growth in contactless and digital payment methods following the Covid pandemic, just 30 percent of all point-of-sale payments in Germany in 2020 were made by card.
In comparison, 60 percent of payments were made by cash in the same year.