Walmart's purchase of Mexico food delivery app set to spur e-commerce

Published: September 14, 2018 12:54:38 | Updated: September 15, 2018 17:30:38

A general view of a Walmart store in Mexico City on April 24, 2012 — Reuters/File

Walmart says it will acquire Latin American food delivery service Cornershop for $225 million, in a move to ramp up its online grocery business in Mexico and Chile.

The deal mirrors Walmart’s growing investments and tie-ups in online delivery services across the globe, as it aims to compete with, the world’s largest online retailer.

Shares of the retail company’s Mexico division, known as Walmex, jumped more than 3 per cent on the news, closing at their highest level since late July, Reuters reported on Thursday.

Walmart’s acquisition of three-year-old Cornershop, which offers its service through a mobile app and was founded in San Francisco, will help it quicken deliveries for its Walmart, Superama, and Sam’s Club stores in Mexico, analysts said.

“We believe the transaction is positive and will result in greater efficiencies and higher growth in online sales,” Signum Research said in a report.

Walmex said it would absorb Cornershop’s Mexico operations.

Walmart aims to deliver food to more than 40 per cent of US households by year’s end using delivery companies like Uber Technologies. In Canada, the company will team up with startup Instacart for on-demand grocery deliveries.

In Mexico, traditional retailers are increasing investments in logistics, technology and product offerings to meet the growing demand for online shopping, including in the food and drink sector. Just 3 per cent of all retail sales in Mexico are online, according to market research firm Euromonitor International., which bought Whole Foods Market last year, began selling nonperishable groceries online in Mexico in late August.

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