Walmart Buys Startup Parcel to Power Same-Day Delivery in New York

Fulfilling a recent promise from its U.S. ecommerce head Marc Lore, Walmart has acquired courier service Parcel to provide same-day delivery of fresh and frozen groceries and online merchandise orders to Walmart and Jet.com customers in New York.

Parcel provides same-day and overnight delivery in scheduled two-hour windows. Its automated technology platform provides live updates for customers throughout the delivery process. In New York, deliveries originate from a warehouse in Brooklyn, using employee drivers in leased trucks and routing algorithms for optimization.

The company says it has partnerships with several meal kit, grocery and ecommerce companies including Bonobos, and has delivered more than one million meals in New York in the past two years.

“New York City is the top market for both Jet and Walmart.com, and because of the density of the area, along with the proximity of our fulfillment centers, it’s the perfect place for high-impact innovation,” said Nate Faust, senior vice president, Walmart U.S. Ecommerce Supply Chain, in a blog post.

Being “born and bred in New York,” Faust said Parcel has developed “unique expertise delivering to customers in a distinctly challenging and essential market.”

“This acquisition allows us to continue testing ways to offer fast delivery while lowering our operating costs,” he said.

MCM Musings: As the acquisition spree rolls on, there’s no letup in the getup for Walmart in its rock ‘em-sock ‘em battle with Amazon in ecommerce and delivery services. Its deep resources and heft give it a distinct advantage over other big-box challengers that’s near impossible to make up. Parcel was bought for a relative song, reportedly less than $10 million according to Recode. It should deliver well beyond that in value and return for the Bentonville, AR giant as it expands same-day delivery in Gotham City and beyond.

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