They say the enemy of my enemy is my friend — and in a world where Amazon seems dedicated to eating everyone else’s lunch, a host of unlikely friendships are blooming.
Most recently, according to Wall Street Journal reports, Walmart and Lord & Taylor have struck up just such a friendship. According to reports, the two name-brand retailers are considering combining their powers, with Lord & Taylor digitally moving to a dedicated space on Walmart’s website.
It’s like a new update on an old expression: if you can’t beat Amazon, join Walmart.
And Lord & Taylor is reported to be a first step, with the bigger vision being an online mall where Walmart is the front door and shoppers have options to choose from like Bonobos, Jet.com and ModCloth (all firms that have been part of Walmart’s big online buying spree of the last year and a half.)
Representatives for Walmart and Lord & Taylor had no comment on the reports.
Walmart, through its CEO, has also signaled that the acquisitions are likely to continue — likely led by Marc Lore, the head of Walmart U.S.’ digital business. Walmart also continues to up its talent game — having recently brought in former Saks executive Denise Incandela to head its fashion business.
These efforts come as Amazon continues to go after the fashion brands — Nike is already there, and struggling mall brands like Gap, Inc. have made it clear they are thinking about it.
An online Walmart mall would cement the company’s position as an alternative to Amazon — and Lord & Taylor is looking for ways to up its digital presence in an area of falling foot traffic.