UPS Names Former Home Depot CFO as New CEO

| Mike O'Brien

Carol Tomé, who has been CFO of Home Depot for 18 years and helped manage its strong growth, will be the new CEO of UPS. She succeeds David Abney, who will stay on as executive chairman until retiring from the board in September and acting as a transitional consultant through the end of 2020.

Grocers Limit Items, Leave-On-Porch Deliveries Grow Due to Coronavirus

| Mike O'Brien

Panic buying continues to cause empty grocery shelves due to the coronavirus panic, with heavier clusters in affected states as grocery retailers are starting to ration supplies. Same-day delivery providers Instacart and Postmates have expanded a “leave it at my door” option as more spooked shoppers opt for no physical contact.

Spate of Four Acquisitions in Operations and Fulfillment

| Mike O'Brien

This was a busy M&A week among operations and fulfillment vendors. FOG Software Group acquired shipping software firm ProShip from Quadient; Hy Tek Material Handling acquired Johnson Stevens Consulting; Dematic acquired Digital Applications International Ltd; and Aptean acquired TMS firm Paragon Software Systems.

Your Input Matters: Take Our MCM Outlook Survey 2020

| Mike O'Brien

What major trends are driving rapid changes in ecommerce and DTC, and what do they mean for your business? Multichannel Merchant’s annual MCM Outlook survey helps uncover how our audience is reacting to today’s business challenges and market shifts. Complete the survey today and be entered to win a $100 Amex card!

Amazon Reportedly Using Hybrid MFC Approach in New Grocery Store

| Mike O'Brien

Amazon is reportedly using a micro-fulfillment center solution from Dematic at its first grocery store not named Whole Foods outside Los Angeles, sending a loud signal to the rest of the market that an MFC capability is critical to success and maintaining market share in the red-hot e-grocery sector.

Amazon Cutting Out Delivery Contractors It Says Don’t Pass Muster

| Mike O'Brien

Amazon is severing delivery contracts in five states, affecting about 1,300 drivers, eliminating partners it says aren’t meeting delivery standards, according to Bloomberg and other reports. Two years ago, Amazon began a program to help entrepreneurs start up delivery businesses, creating less of a need for the existing contractors.

Peapod Shuts Down Midwest Operation to Focus on East Coast

| Mike O'Brien

Ahold Delhaize USA said it plans to close the Midwest division of its Peapod online grocery delivery business to focus on expanding operations in the more lucrative East Coast, where most of its stores are located. Dutch-based Ahold said the Midwest operation of Peapod represented $97 million of the $1.1 billion in online sales in the U.S.

FedEx Diverting Some Express Packages into Ground Network

| Mike O'Brien

FedEx is diverting some Express deliveries into its less expensive Ground network to drive efficiency and build ecommerce package density after parting ways with Amazon in 2019, according an internal memo obtained by the WSJ. FedEx will redirect residential Express packages to Ground as they get close to their destination.

E-Grocery Penetration Expected to Hit Double Digits by 2024

| Mike O'Brien

E-grocery penetration in the U.S. reached 4.5% of the overall food/beverage market in 2019, according to figures from Deutsche Bank cited by e-fulfillment technology provider Fabric, after hovering around 2% for years. It’s expected to exceed 10% by 2024 and hit 12% the following year.