Retail

Retail Pulse: Dine Brands Teams With Postmates; Walmart Rolls Out Alcohol Pickup

Retail Pulse: Dine Brands Teams With Postmates

Fast-casual restaurant groups are teaming with online food delivery firms to offer on-demand ordering to consumers through digital platforms. For instance, Dine Brands, the parent company of Applebee’s Neighborhood Grill + Bar and IHOP restaurants, is teaming with Postmates to offer delivery from thousands of locations, according to an announcement.

Consumers can order delivery from IHOP or Applebee’s by visiting the Postmates website or downloading the company’s app. And if they subscribe to the Postmates Unlimited membership service, they don’t pay any delivery fees. On the restaurant side, Dine Brands and Postmates will integrate delivery orders into IHOP’s and Applebee’s point of sale (POS) systems, which the companies say will streamline the order fulfillment process and provide an even better experience for guests.

Dine Brands CEO Steve Joyce said in the announcement, “Dine is committed to delivering exceptional dining experiences for our guests, whether they are enjoying our craveable meals at home or in our restaurants. We are proud to join forces with partners such as Postmates, who is aligned with our guest-centric value.”

Postmates provides on-demand delivery choices from over 500,000 restaurants, convenience stores and grocery stores, in addition to traditional retailers. The company operates in approximately 3,500 cities and has brought “some of the most sought-after local and national restaurants” onto its platform, according to the announcement, while serving 75 of the top 100 U.S. restaurants. Craig Whitmer, VP of merchant business development, said in the announcement that “both Applebee’s and IHOP are very popular on the Postmates platform.” He also noted that the company was “thrilled to provide customers access to these restaurants in the 3,500+ cities we operate in.”

Dine Brands is not the only restaurant company to team with Postmates. In September, Kahala Brands partnered with the platform to offer on-demand delivery from their brands. (The firm is the parent company of Cold Stone Creamery, Blimpie, Pinkberry, The Counter Custom Burgers, Baja Fresh and others.) Beyond restaurants, retailers in other segments are also teaming with on-demand delivery platforms. Walgreens recently announced a collaboration with Postmates to offer delivery for shoppers seeking products like over-the-counter medications.

From Walgreens to Dine Brands, retailers are teaming with delivery platforms to offer consumers on-demand access to their products without visiting a brick-and-mortar store.

In Other Brick-and-Mortar News

Walmart has announced that customers in 2,000 locations in 29 states can tap into its pickup service for alcohol purchases. The service lets customers directly search for adult beverages and add them to their cart. Shoppers can select from a variety of beer and wine options, including regional or local brands in states such as Texas, California and Florida. Select locations will also allow for the pickup of spirits, depending on local laws.

Tom Ward, Walmart’s SVP of digital operations, said in a press release, “No matter what’s on your shopping list, Walmart Grocery Pickup is helping our customers keep time in their busy schedules. Now, without ever leaving their car, customers can pick up the perfect bottle of wine for dinner or beer for the big game.” (The news comes as the retailer announced earlier in the month that it is rolling out a new grocery delivery service.)

And direct-to-consumer (DTC) shoe brand Allbirds plans to open 20 stores next year. The company started as a Silicon Valley eCommerce retailer and has opened 14 stores so far. “We’ve got nearly 15 stores at the moment – 14 soon to be 15,” said Tim Brown, the firm’s co-founder and co-CEO, per reports. “We’ll add 20 stores next year. Many of them in the States – we’ve got some overseas in China and the U.K. and New Zealand.”

In the last couple of years, Allbirds has begun to open the doors to stores to let shoppers try their sneakers before buying them. The locations have also aided in creating more buzz surrounding wool sneakers, which the firm promotes as an environmentally sustainable footwear approach. Brown noted that the company is “hugely excited about the channel” and that it is “a great opportunity for people to touch our product, to try our product.”

On another note, Dunkin’ finished the third quarter with over 12 million loyalty members contributing approximately 13 percent of rooftop sales, driven by digital initiatives in multi-tender rewards and mobile guest checkout. The quick-service coffee chain reported revenues of $355.9 million and diluted adjusted earnings per share of 90 cents for the third quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $358.74 million and 81 cents.

To keep tabs on the latest retail trends, check out next week’s Retail Pulse.

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