Wednesday, 18 July, 2018


In Challenge To Amazon, Walmart Will Deliver Groceries In Over 100 Cities

Retail Signs In Challenge To Amazon, Walmart Will Deliver Groceries In Over 100 Cities
Conrad Doyle | 14 March, 2018, 12:41

Walmart Inc. plans to expand its grocery home-delivery service to more than 100 metro areas this year, a sign its food fight with Amazon.com Inc.is heating up. Orders can also be placed via a Walmart Grocery app.

The supermarket chain announced Wednesday it will expand its online grocery delivery service to more than 40 percent of USA households by the end of 2018. The retailer did not specify which markets will offer the service as part of the latest expansion, but Tom Ward, vice president of digital operations, said Walmart will be aggressive with the rollout. Ward said the home-delivery service has brought in new customers in the six cities where it's now offered, which include Dallas and San Jose, California. According to CNBC, Uber will continue to be one of the retailer's delivery partners.

Walmart's online business had been a bright spot for the chain, but it stumbled during the holiday season.

Amazon, which acquired Whole Foods for $13.7 billion past year, recently introduced two-hour grocery delivery from Whole Foods to its Prime members in four cities - Austin, Texas; Cincinnati; Dallas; and Virginia Beach, Va. - with further expansion expected. Target Corp., meanwhile, agreed to acquire delivery startup Shipt a year ago to expand its capabilities.

Ward disagreed that Walmart's move was related to Amazon, saying: "This is our response to honestly what our customers have been looking for". Cowen researchers saying past year that food and beverage sales online account for just 4 percent of total sales in the category, and online accounted for only 9 percent of sales for consumables like toothpaste and household goods.

Walmart is building on its online grocery pickup program that uses personal shoppers to pick items and then take them to shoppers' cars parked at the curb. Amazon also has spent over a decade trying to build up its AmazonFresh grocery delivery service, but so far seen limited success. The company said no subscription is required.

New customers can get their first order delivered for free with the promotional code "FRESHCAR".

With greater control over how its produce is grown, Walmart could vertically-integrate, manage crop yields more effectively, and draw shoppers with transparency and sustainability. Walmart said more delivery companies will be announced later.

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