Walmart announced Wednesday (Sept. 5) that it is testing a new last-mile delivery service dubbed Spark Delivery, which is a crowd-sourced delivery platform.
In a press release, Walmart said the test will enable it to learn more about the full last-mile delivery process. The retailer is using an in-house platform that provides drivers with the ability to sign up for windows of time that work best with their schedule, as well as grocery delivery order details, navigation assistance and other support services.
Walmart said that some components of Spark are being powered by Bringg, a delivery logistics technology platform. Walmart’s team of personal shoppers will still shop for the customers’ orders. To complete the deliveries, Spark will tap independent drivers who partner with Delivery Drivers Inc., a firm that is focused on last-mile contractor management. Delivery Drivers manages recruiting, screening, background checks, payment and accounting, among other services for drivers.
“We’re saving customers time by leveraging new technology and connecting all the parts of our business into a single seamless shopping experience: great stores, easy pickup, fast delivery, and apps and websites that are simple to use. We’re serving our customers in ways that no one else can,” said Greg Foran, president and CEO, Walmart U.S. in the press release. “Using our size and scale, we’re bringing the best of Walmart to customers across the country. Spark Delivery is one way we’re exploring how to get quality groceries from our door to our customers’ doors.”
Spark Delivery is currently being piloted in Nashville and New Orleans, with plans to roll out to a few more metro areas this year. Walmart said that with its delivery efforts, it is poised to bring delivery to 100 metro areas covering 40 percent of U.S. households.