Walmart Buys Delivery Startup in New York City

Walmart agreed to acquire delivery startup Parcel based in Brooklyn, making it the retail behemoth’s fifth acquisition of a tech startup over the last 14 months. The deal was closed September 29, but no acquisition terms were released.

Founded four years ago, Parcel is a delivery platform that is designed to help companies in e-commerce get their products to the customer’s door. It operates 24 hours day delivering packages in scheduled windows of two hours, overnight, or on the same day the order was placed.

The retail war both offline and online has moved in an interesting direction the last five years.

After moving into the grocery business and other goods for the home, Amazon announced its acquisition of Whole Foods that gave the e-commerce giant a big presence in brick and mortar stores to go with its huge online presence.

Walmart is busy increasing its credentials online as well, and acquisitions are playing an important role in the retailer’s strategy.

In August, Walmart announced the acquisition of Jet.com at the price of $3 billion, and it has since acquired Shoebuy an online retailer of clothing at the price of $70 million, Moosejaw an outdoor retailer at $51 million and Bonobos a retailer of men’s clothing at the price of $310 million.

Parcel was launched in 2014 in New York City and has not yet expanded into any other markets. It had raised only $2 million in funding, so it is not likely Walmart paid any large sum of money for the company.

Walmart stated the acquisition price was less than its previous acquisitions made in 2017. Which suggest the price it paid was not more than $50 million and likely substantially less.

What Walmart intends to do with Parcel is quite obvious, use it for its last-mile delivers throughout the Big Apple, covering its general merchandise, and its fresh as well as frozen groceries from both its online store Jet.com and Walmart itself.

However, it appears that Walmart is interested in continuing to serve the existing clients of Parcel as well. Parcel has created partnerships with a number of grocery, meal kit, and ecommerce businesses, and over the last two years has delivered over 1 million meals, said Walmart in its blog post Monday.

Therefore Walmart in its post said its immediate plan for Parcel is for the delivery company to continue serving existing clients and expanding its own customer base.

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