Business World

Tuesday 25 April 2017

Wal-Mart overhaul to escalate growing e-commerce war with kingpins Amazon

Wal-Mart is under pressure as Amazon pushes deeper into the grocery business (Stock image/REUTERS)
Wal-Mart is under pressure as Amazon pushes deeper into the grocery business (Stock image/REUTERS)

Spencer Soper

Wal-Mart is overhauling its e-commerce team and elevating executives from its recently acquired Jet.com business, aiming to better challenge Amazon with more selection and lower prices.

The changes are meant to make Wal-Mart more "customer-centric", Jet founder Marc Lore, who is now ceo of Wal-Mart's e-commerce operation, said in a memo obtained by Bloomberg. Wal-Mart bought online retailer Jet in September for about $3.3bn, turning to the startup to bolster its online operation.

"Our strategy is about offering more choice, competitive prices - particularly on food and consumables," Lore said.

The company is streamlining its web team so that it can serve customers whether they shop online, via smartphones or in stores, according to the memo. Wal-Mart is under pressure as Amazon pushes deeper into the grocery business. Large retailers have traditionally used food to draw shoppers into stores, with hopes that they buy other goods with higher-profit margins. But now Amazon may pick off more of those customers. It is even targeting US food-stamp recipients.

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