Today in the Connected Economy: Walmart Wraps EV Delivery Pilot

Walmart, Canoo, EVs, connected economy

Today in the connected economy, Walmart has concluded its pilot delivery program using vans from electric vehicle startup Canoo. Plus, BNPL firm Klarna is teaming up with Software-as-a-Service company Shoplazza, and Dick’s Sporting Goods scores with new omnichannel and experiential offerings.

Walmart, Canoo Finalize EV Delivery Fleet

Walmart has wrapped its pilot program with electric vehicle startup Canoo, which used Canoo’s lifestyle delivery vehicles (LDVs) to make last-mile deliveries in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

Using information gleaned from the deployment, the companies said they have finalized the configuration of the vehicles set to be used for InHome delivery from Walmart stores to customers’ homes.

“Our LDV has been engineered to enable a wide range of package deliveries, including refrigerated items, groceries and general merchandise — and do it efficiently, emission free and with a high level of driver comfort and ergonomics,” said Canoo CEO and chairman Tony Aquila.

Dick’s Sporting Goods Grows Omnichannel, Experiential Retail Offerings

Dick’s Sporting Goods is enjoying the fruits of the changes it’s made over the last five years, such as expanded offerings in experiential retail and omnichannel delivery.

“Our second quarter performance demonstrates the strength of our core strategies and the foundational improvements we have made across our business over the past five years,” Executive Chairman Ed Stack said in the company’s earnings release.

The retailer has launched several new concepts since beginning its “transformational journey” in 2017, including Public Lands, a retail concept featuring experiential elements like a climbing wall, and GameChanger, a technology firm that creates products for youth sports teams and communities.

Shoplazza, Klarna Team to Speed Merchant Globalization

Software-as-a-Service platform Shoplazza is working with BNPL provider Klarna to bring new payment offerings to more than 360,000 Shoplazza merchants.

The companies said the collaboration will give international customers a wider diversity of payment options and offer better conversion rates for merchants. Alyson Zhang, Shoplazza’s chief operating officer, said the partnership will also offer more opportunities for direct-to-consumer (D2C) brands looking to go global.

Cashfree Teams With PharmEasy for Fast Payment Settlements

Cashfree Payments, a payments and application programming interface (API) firm, has joined forces with PharmEasy to automate merchant transactions and expedite payment settlements.

With Cashfree Payments’ Payouts solution, retailers can immediately pay vendors, process customer refunds and disburse loans, using a tool that the company claims has a 99.98% payouts success rate. Payouts’ API integration also lets PharmEasy automate the process and speed settlement to merchants within 48 hours of payment receipt.

Gatik, Cummins to Integrate Technologies on Autonomous Delivery Trucks

Looking to boost the performance, safety and fuel efficiency of medium-duty delivery trucks, Gatik and Cummins are joining forces and integrating Gatik’s autonomous driving system with Cummins’ advanced powertrain solution.

These trucks are built to meet customers’ needs for autonomous middle-mile logistics, the companies said, running short-haul, B2B delivery routes.

“As we commercialize our product offerings at scale across North America, ensuring that we integrate our technology with the world’s leading Tier 1 companies is critical to meeting intensifying demand for our solution safely and quickly,” said Gatik Chief Technology Officer and co-founder Arjun Narang.