Shopping Spree: Walmart Is Eyeing More Startups, And These Companies Could Be A Target
Walmart may be the current leader in the retail sector, but the brand is far from finished expanding its empire.
Since August 2016, the company has acquired Jet.com, Bonobos and Moosejaw, highlighting its desire to appeal to a higher-income demographic. It also acquired Modcloth and Shoebuy in order to expand its e-commerce reach, and Parcel to improve its last-mile delivery services.
In addition to a slew of acquisitions, Walmart changed its name from Wal-Mart Stores to Walmart in December in an effort to place more emphasis on its omnichannel offering over its brick-and-mortar stores.
Here are some potential acquisitions the world's largest retailer may be considering 2018, according to CBInsights:
CBInsights reports the retail giant will likely look to acquire more startup brands with a focus on niche markets like athleisure, direct-to-consumer and hair care. This could include companies like Outdoor Voices, which sells activewear and has been backed by investors such as Gwyneth Paltrow; Everlane, a higher-end men and women’s apparel brand; Allbirds, a startup that sells wool-based sneakers; and Madison Reed, a direct-to-consumer hair care startup.
When it comes to e-commerce, Walmart will likely look for ways to compete with its primary rival, Amazon. This means investing in companies like Thrive Market, which could compete with Whole Foods offerings by providing organic and non-GMO products on its platform, Boxed. The platform allows consumers to shop through mobile commerce and offers affordable food and home products in bulk. Another company Walmart may consider is RichRelevance, which customizes each shoppers' experience to ensure they receive personal recommendations when they shop.
As Amazon and Walmart try to one-up each other by boasting the fastest delivery times, it will become more pertinent for both to invest in companies that will help them achieve last-mile delivery.
Deliv, which prides itself on quick delivery and already serves more than 4,000 retailers across the U.S., could be on Walmart’s radar. Other acquisition possibilities include AxleHire, which specializes in meal-kit and perishable deliveries, and PillPack, a logistics startup that specializes in delivering medications to customers.
In order to improve efficiencies in the warehouses prior to shipping products, Walmart could also invest in a startup like Canvas, which provides robotics in order to automate warehouses and stockrooms.