Wal-Mart Stores announced that it acquired New York delivery company Parcel as it girds to compete with Amazon and other supermarkets for home delivery of groceries.
The purchase of Parcel, a Brooklyn-based specialist in same day, overnight and scheduled deliveries of perishable and non-perishable items, adds to Wal-Mart’s push into e-commerce following the US$3.3bil (RM13.93bil) purchase of Jet.com in 2016 and other smaller acquisitions.
Many analysts expect stiff competition among supermarkets in home delivery of groceries following Amazon’s purchase this year of Whole Foods Market.
Grocers including Wal-Mart now regularly take online orders that are picked up by shoppers at curbside. But analysts say more work is needed to improve home delivery of fresh food.
Wal-Mart senior vice-president Nate Faust spotlighted consumers’ shifting demands as an impetus for the deal.
“Customers’ expectations around delivery and what is possible have changed significantly in the past couple of years,” Faust said in a blog post.
“Whatever they need and however they’d like it, we aim to provide – including the ability to offer last-minute ordering with same-day delivery service.”
Terms of the transaction were not disclosed, but Wal-Mart said the price was smaller than previous acquisitions this year. — AFP