Either way, it’s a great bet. Amazon, while good at building horizontal businesses, is bad at personalization. Amazon never got the user experience right. Millennials and the newer generations are very sensitive to this. Walmart and Lore’s team have a good chance of besting Bezos to that segment.
Another big advantage, often undervalued, is Jet.com’s corporate culture. Marc didn’t come alone. He brought most of his people with him. People that follow him and that work as a team.
On top of that, Lore is placing each acquired startup CEO as his deputy. Each one manages their company’s vertical. Making use of the startup CEO’s expertise and empowering them within the larger organization is a great move. Marc is aligning their acquisitions with the overall online Walmart strategy.
This might not seem like an advantage, but it is. It offsets the lack of technology Walmart has. The company is in need of innovation and fast. Nonetheless, acquiring startups without a smart process to assimilate both the technology and the talent, is a recipe for disaster.
Marc’s own experience when Amazon acquired his previous company is the perfect example. You spend money, retain the talent for some years and then the churn rate spikes.
If Walmart wants to win this race, they have to bet on the long-term. That means investing in their culture and their people.
Historically, when it comes to international markets, Walmart hasn’t fair too well. They’ve had a hard time in Europe and in Asia, to name a few.
This has changed drastically with McMillon. As I said before, the company’s innovation capabilities are small compared to Amazon. Trying to enter fast-moving markets like China, while competing simultaneously with Alibaba, JD.com, and Amazon is insane.