business news in context, analysis with attitude

The Wall Street Journal reported last week that Walmart plans to partner with Instacart to provide grocery delivery in New York City, where it does not have any stores.

According to the story, "Instacart shoppers will buy groceries at Walmart stores outside the city’s limits, then deliver those items to nearby homes, the companies said. The service won’t be available on the island of Manhattan.

"Walmart has worked to expand its grocery-delivery and store-parking-lot-pickup capabilities during the pandemic, as demand for such services has surged and the company has tried to keep pace with Amazon.com Inc.

"Last year Walmart formed a partnership with Instacart to deliver groceries in a small number of cities in California, as well as in Tulsa, Okla. Walmart also works with other delivery partners, including DoorDash Inc. and Roadie Inc. With those companies, Walmart workers gather orders, then hand off shopping bags to delivery drivers."

KC's View:

Walmart always has wanted to use e-commerce as a lever to get into a market - New York City - that it is has been prevented from entering via actual stores.  (Which I think is a crock, by the way.)  And so now it is using its Instacart to take another stab at it.

There was a story a couple of weeks ago about how Instacart had entered into talks that might've had it acquired by DoorDash.  The talks ended, perhaps because the price tag was too high and perhaps because there might've been resistance from federal regulators to such. combination.

I wonder if Walmart might be interested in buying Instacart.  After all, it is getting into the business of providing delivery services for third-party businesses, and this would just expand on those intentions.  It has money.  

Probably lots of reasons not to do this, but in some ways buying Instacart might be even more impactful than buying Jet.

Just wondering.