Walmart launches GoLocal for deliveries from other retailers

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on Aug 24, 2021
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  • Walmart launches delivery service d믭 GoLocal
  • Delivery fleet to include drones and autonomous electric vehicles
  • Walmart looking to compete with Shopify and Amazon in delivery

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Walmart Corporation (NYSE: WMT) has launched a delivery service dubbed GoLocal, which carries goods from other retailers to consumers. The company indicated that it would commence deliveries by the end of the year, and the delivery fleet will include the latest technologies such as drones and autonomous vehicles. Last Mile Senior Vice President for Walmart Tom Ward told CNBC:

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“It’s about bringing the capabilities that we as Walmart have been laser-focused on building and connecting for our own customers to life for both local and national businesses.”

GoLocal to offer delivery within two hours

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According to the company, GoLocal would be a white-label service, implying that the deliveries will not be in Walmart-branded cars. Walmart indicated that it would provide competitively priced shipping in less than two hours and a two-day delivery option. Gig workers and associates, as well as delivery companies, will handle deliveries.

For online packaged delivery, the company has partnered with FedEx, but the retailer has not indicated whether it will be used for GoLocal. Ward added that the company would leverage innovative delivery partners such as Waymo, Nuro, and Cruise, an autonomous electric vehicle company that Walmart invested in in 2020. In addition, the focus will be on the drone delivery end with partners such as DroneUP, FlyTrex, and ZipLine. Ward added:

“What we’re excited about is that as we scale this, we’ve got all these different disruptive technologies that bring in the last mile work together at Walmart.”

Walmart has been building delivery service for five years

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Over the last five years, the retailer had been building capacity to deliver goods to consumers. For instance, in 2016, Walmart acquired e-commerce startup Jet.com for around $3.3 billion, and in March 2018, it unveiled a grocery delivery service for orders from its stores. In addition, in February last year, it launched Walmart Fulfilment Services to compete with other marketplaces such as Shopify and Amazon.com Inc. Although the company discontinued Jet.com last year, CEO Doug McMillion lauded the acquisition that it had helped it grow its delivery networks.

David Vernon, Bernstein senior transportation analyst, said that the retailer’s local delivery service would not have an impact on UPS and FedEx revenues. Vernon told CNBC:

“The local delivery market has 230,000 companies that compete in every city across America. There are two national parcel networks. They have some overlap; business is shifting towards some of that local business. But in the long run it’s not exactly the same thing.”

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