Wal-Mart Stores Inc (WMT.N) announced on Tuesday that it has acquired Parcel Inc, a New York-based last-mile delivery startup, as the retailer seeks to improve its same-day delivery offering and gain a competitive edge against Amazon.com Inc (AMZN.O).
"Parcel has partnerships with several meal kit, grocery, and e-commerce companies, and has delivered more than 1 million meals in the past two years", commented company SVP of US e-Commerce Supply Chain Nate Faust. The acquisition comes as Walmart's Jet.com has been testing free same-day delivery of certain orders to customers in New York City. Additionally, the area's density, as well as the proximity of Walmart's fulfillment centers, makes the city the flawless place for "high-impact innovation", Faust asserted.More news: Facebook sets up crisis response page after Las Vegas shooting
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"From a warehouse in Brooklyn, Parcel receives packages destined for customers throughout New York City", he said. Wal-Mart also is using its own trucks to deliver groceries to customers in Denver and San Jose, Calif. The service allows customers to schedule delivery times for their packages, which solves the problem apartment dwellers face when they don't have a door person to let a delivery person into the building. And recently, Walmart starting testing out an option that would give delivery drivers access to a customer's home so that groceries ordered online could be put in the fridge if the customer isn't home. "No problem" emblazoned on the side in big letters.
The acquisition will help expand Jet's same-day deliveries while reducing the costs associated with doing so, the company believes. "We probably need to get out in front of this instead of waiting around four or five years and seeing if this becomes successful, '" Yarbrough said. Parcel has been handling deliveries for companies like Chef'd and Martha & Marley Spoon and Walmart says it will continue to work with its existing clients. "It's the ideal place for high-impact innovation", he said.