Many contests have been dubbed the “Fight of the Century,” but Walmart vs. Amazon might live up to that hyperbole, at least on the e-commerce front.
Driving the news: Amazon is opening a robotics-backed fulfilment centre in Ontario this fall, with the capacity to pick, pack, and ship ~750,000 items daily.
Why it’s happening: Amazon, for decades the undisputed leader in e-commerce, is trying to stay ahead of its arch-rival: Walmart.
- The king of traditional retail has earmarked US$14 billion for supply chain advancements and is aggressively moving to automated fulfillment centres.
- Last month, it also launched a Prime-like subscription program in Canada and ran an online sales event at the same time as Prime Day.
Yes, but: Amazon is still the top dog. Yesterday, the company reported sales growth and profit that topped expectations, powered in part by (you guessed it) e-commerce.
Bottom line: While both companies are investing heavily into automation, warehouses, and customer experience, the ability to translate investments into lower prices, speedy delivery times, or other value adds like high personalizationis what will win customer dollars.—QH