Wal-Mart acquires online outdoor retailer Moosejaw for $51m

A customer pushes a shopping cart at a Walmart store in Chicago, Illinois, U.S. November 23, 2016. REUTERS/Kamil Krzaczynski

Wal-Mart Stores Inc has acquired online outdoor clothing and gear retailer Moosejaw for $51 million in an all-cash deal, the company said on Wednesday, as it works to boost its competitive standing in U.S. e-commerce.

Moosejaw will be Wal-Mart’s third acquisition in just over six months. In August 2016, the world’s largest retailer paid more than $3 billion to acquire online startup Jet.com and in late December, Jet.com acquired online footwear retailer ShoeBuy for approximately $70 million.

In the five years before the Jet.com deal, the retailer acquired more than 15 startups. Wal-Mart has not disclosed what it spent on each of those acquisitions, but said it spent a total of $3.1 billion on e-commerce and digital projects in the four fiscal years to January 2017.

Moosejaw is a Michigan-based online retailer with 10 brick-and-mortar stores. It sells outdoor gear and apparel from makers including Patagonia and North Face and has “strong relationships” with these brands, Wal-Mart said in a statement.

“Apparel and accessories is now the number one category for digital commerce, according to comScore Inc, and we gain the experience of another well-established e-commerce player, this time in the active outdoor category,” Wal-Mart’s statement said.

Moosejaw will continue to operate its site and stores separately and will be run as a standalone brand.

Wal-Mart has been working aggressively to close the gap with rival Amazon.com Inc under the leadership of Chief Executive Doug McMillon and new e-commerce chief Marc Lore. In October it said it will slow the pace of new store openings to focus on expanding its e-commerce business.

Lore, who joined Wal-Mart when it purchased the company he founded, Jet.com, has been charged with revitalizing Wal-Mart’s online business and has introduced changes such as free two-day shipping.

On Monday, Reuters reported that Wal-Mart for the first time will combine its own buying for products sold at its stores with purchases it makes for its website, a significant move to stamp out duplicate efforts as it consolidates buying operations.

Wal-Mart’s online sales account for about 3 percent of total sales. It is looking for online sales growth of 20 to 30 percent in the second half of this year, and for even faster growth in the next few years.

Also Read: Indian e-commerce war hotting up: Walmart in talks to invest up to $1b in Flipkart

Walmart supplier Li & Fung sells distribution unit to DCH for $350m

Reuters

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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.