Wal-Mart (WMT – Free Report) announced on Monday that it is expanding its online grocery delivery services to Dallas, Texas and Orlando, Florida using Uber drivers to make the deliveries.
“We’ve been testing delivery in a number of ways for a while now in key markets across the country,” said Mike Turner, Wal-Mart’s vice president of ecommerce operations. “In some areas, we’re trying general merchandise deliveries led by associates. In others, we’re testing grocery delivery using Walmart trucks and drivers.”
Wal-Mart will now operate its online grocery delivery service in six markets. In San Jose and Denver, Wal-Mart has its own fleet of drivers to deliver groceries to local consumers. The company also uses Uber drivers for deliveries in Tampa and Phoenix.
The retailer will now partner with Uber in its Orlando and Dallas markets. Wal-Mart employees will act as personal shoppers for customers, preparing the online grocery orders. Employees will then pass on the order to an Uber driver to deliver it to the customer’s home.
“Hopefully this expanded offering, and more like it, will speed up the shopping experience and give you back something just as precious as money–time,” said Turner.
Wal-Mart also gives customers the option to order groceries online and then pick their order up from one of the 900 participating locations.
Wal-Mart and other retailers have been working to enhance their delivery options in the face of competition from Amazon.com (AMZN – Free Report) . After the announcement of Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods (WFM – Free Report) in June, grocers have been working hard to prepare for the potential impact on the supermarket industry.
Later this week, shareholders of Whole Foods are set to vote on Amazon’s acquisition bid. Investors are expected to approve the offer, moving the transaction one step closer to completion.
Shares of Wal-Mart are up in morning trading on Monday, rising 0.73%.
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