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Industry NewsWalmart Canada unveils new grocery fulfillment technology at Ontario store

Walmart Canada unveils new grocery fulfillment technology at Ontario store

scarborough_-_ribbon_cutting_-_group_photo-5142549(L-R): John Bayliss, EVP, Transformation Officer, Walmart Canada; Vera Friedrich, Vice President and Managing Director, Dematic; Councillor Gary Crawford, City of Toronto; Olivia Lynch, Director, Omni Store of the Future; Saeed Anslow, VP, Omni-Channel & Online Grocery; Jonathan Rodriguez, Sr. Manager, Micro-Fulfillment; Dries Dhooghe, SVP, Operations – Region ; Raj Radhakrishnan, Store Manager; Laurent Duray, Chief E-commerce Officer; Mariam Khan, Manager, Omni Innovation, Walmart Canada.

A Walmart Canada store in Ontario is one of the first location among Walmart International stores around the world to integrate new technology into a store environment with the aim of expediting online fulfillment for grocery delivery. The company has repurposed space at a Scarborough West store and Walmart says it’s looking at expanding the concept to more stores.

Laurent Duray, chief e-commerce officer, tells Grocery Business that Walmart Canada “is looking at different options on how we’re going to grow; there are no set plans but we are looking at expanding and learning from this on how we can reinvent our store network to better meet customer expectations. We’ve embraced technology to help us increase capacity for orders, providing our customers with more available timeslots and expanded access to delivery. Our associates and our stores are the key to the journey we’re on to keep making the online shopping experience better and faster for our customers.”

According to Walmart Canada, space in stores across the country have been repurposed to improve online grocery pickup and delivery, such as in Vaughan, Ont. where the store’s back room picking space helps reduce salesforce congestion and increase pickup nd delivery timeslot availability for customers. 

The 20,000 sq ft semi-automated operation located at the back of the Scarborough store can fulfill the grocery delivery needs of approximately 70 per cent of downtown Toronto customers and is capable of handling 1,200 daily online grocery orders. Currently, the facility accommodates all grocery items including fresh and chilled, except for frozen, which Walmart says is the next in development.

The repurposed space inside the Scarborough West store integrates state-of-the-art technology, helping associates to pick online grocery orders six times faster than on a regular sales floor. 

oliva_perdana_director_omnichannel_walmart_canada_2-9136748Olivia Perdana, director of omnichannel for Walmart Canada demonstrates the new fulfillment technology

Using automated technology alongside proprietary Walmart systems, the company says the reimagined space helps the company provide more choice, convenience, speed and quality to customers when they shop online for groceries.

saeed_anslow_vp_online_grocery_and_omnichannel_and_laurent_duray_chief_ecommerce_officer_walmart_canadaa_-5220619Saeed Anslow, vice president of online grocery and omnichannel, and Laurent Duray, chief ecommerce officer, Walmart Canada

“We’re transforming our business for our customers, every day. By leveraging our stores, including modernizing our Scarborough West store with innovative new technology, we’re helping more customers access our everyday low prices through online grocery delivery,” says Horacio Barbeito, president and CEO, Walmart Canada. “With investments in technology and infrastructure, our associates have more modern tools to serve our customers. Together we’re finding innovative ways to make our existing footprint work harder for customers as we make shopping online with Walmart faster, easier, and more convenient.”

This latest initiative is part of Walmart Canada’s $3.5 billion investment it announced earlier to improve infrastructure and customer experience.

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