In a bid to better leverage its millions of customers, retail giant Walmart Inc. created a fintech startup to win more of their spending.
The company has formed a partnership with Ribbit Capital, an investor in stock-trading platform Robinhood, to start a venture that “will bring together Walmart’s retail knowledge and scale with Ribbit’s fintech expertise to deliver tech-driven financial experiences tailored to Walmart’s customers and associates,” according to a statement
Financial technology, or fintech, companies aim to give consumers ways to save, borrow and invest online or via phone without dealing with a traditional bank. Walmart will own a majority of the new venture, but didn’t provide more specific details. The company’s shares gained after the close of regular trading. Meanwhile, a blank-check company set up by Ribbit, surged.
Walmart’s head-to-head competition with Amazon.com Inc. means it is increasingly growing beyond retail. The company is trying to reinvent itself, including launching its own low-cost health clinics and getting into the insurance business. On the tech front, it emerged in late 2020 as a potential bidder for TikTok’s U.S. business after earlier in the year selling its Vudu streaming platform to Comcast Corp.’s Fandango.
The goal of Walmart may be to build an infrastructure like Alibaba has in Asia, where it’s both an online retailer and a major financial services provider — all in the same platform.
Looking for information about how COVID-19 has impacted the payments industry?
The Strawhecker Group (TSG) and Visa Consulting & Analytics (VCA) teamed up to survey a representative sample of U.S. consumers, and analyzed Visa’s proprietary spend data, with the goal of understanding how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted consumer lifestyles, payments trends, and how behaviors may change after the pandemic.