Foursquare used its location intelligence to analyze brick-and-mortar foot traffic, and then speculated on which companies Amazon and Walmart may look to acquire, Jeff Glueck, Foursquare’s CEO, said in a company blog post. This speculation follows Amazon’s upcoming purchase of Whole Foods and Walmart’s e-commerce acquisition spree.
Amazon could be looking to make acquisitions that would further its connection to its current customer base, and help build out its omnichannel options. Here are the companies Foursquare identified as potential targets for the e-commerce titan:
Walmart, Foursquare believes, wants to use acquisitions to reach new consumers and widen its appeal. Interestingly, while their motives may be different, there’s some overlap between potential acquisitions for Walmart and Foursquare’s picks for Amazon:
While these possibilities are purely speculation, the two companies are likely to make more purchases going forward. Many executives expect retail M&A to continue to accelerate, and these titans have the cash to take advantage of a ripe landscape. To be sure, Amazon and Walmart will spend the foreseeable future trying to best each other, and acquisitions will probably remain a large part of that battle.
Brick-and-mortar retailers are caught on the wrong side of the digital shift in retail, with many stuck in a dangerous cycle of falling foot traffic, declining comparable-store sales, and increasing store closures. Over 8,600 retail stores could close this year in the US — more than the previous two years combined, brokerage firm Credit Suisse said in a recent report. Meanwhile, e-commerce pureplays are riding the rise of digital commerce to success — none more so than Amazon, which accounted for 53% of online sales growth in the US last year, according to Slice Intelligence.
In response, many brick-and-mortar retailers have started to use omnichannel fulfillment methods that leverage their store locations and in-store inventory in order to better compete in e-commerce. These omnichannel services, including ship-from-store and click-and-collect, can help retailers manage the transition to digital by:
However, few retailers have mastered these new fulfillment services. While these companies have spent years optimizing their supply chain and logistics networks for delivering goods to their stores or directly to customers’ doorsteps, most have yet to figure out how to profitably bring their store locations into the e-commerce delivery process.
Jonathan Camhi, research analyst for BI Intelligence, Business Insider’s premium research service, has laid out the case for why retailers must transition to an omnichannel fulfillment model, and the challenges complicating that transition for most companies. This omnichannel fulfillment report also detail the benefits and difficulties involved with specific omnichannel fulfillment services like click-and-collect, ship-to-store, and ship-from-store, providing examples of retailers that have experienced success and struggles with these methods. Lastly, it walks through the steps retailers need to take to optimize omnichannel fulfillment for lower costs and faster delivery times.
Here are some of the key takeaways from the report:
In full, the report: