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New Walmart Initiatives Unveiled

Supplier, Advertiser, Non-Profit Upgrades Among Announcements

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In a notable expansion of its advertising capabilities, Walmart Connect, launched in 2021 as a rebrand of the Walmart Media Group, is set to introduce new advertising options for brands of all sizes, including those outside its retail ecosystem.

The 2024 expansion plans include introducing in-store advertising experiences, self-serve campaign management, partnerships with platforms like Roku and TikTok, and targeting non-endemic sectors like automotive and entertainment.

This move is designed to leverage omnichannel shopping behaviors and provide advertisers with advanced measurement and creative support tools, including a machine-learning-powered ad creation tool.

Walmart is also venturing into technological solutions for businesses with the sale of its proprietary AI-driven route optimization technology, aimed at reducing transportation costs and emissions.

This initiative is part of Walmart's strategy to position itself as more than a retail giant, offering advanced technological solutions to enhance efficiency and sustainability in the broader business community.

On the philanthropic side, Walmart announced enhanced support for non-profit organizations through improvements to its Walmart Business and Spark Good platforms.

The company aims to simplify tax-exempt purchasing for eligible organizations, making it easier for them to engage with Walmart’s philanthropic efforts.

Spark Good, launched in late 2022, is being refined to offer a unified online entry point for non-profits, a new platform for volunteer opportunities, and a user-friendly local grants application process.

In the warehouse, the latest expansion is in autonomous forklifts. Four distribution centers will receive 19 of the FoxBot machines, expanding a pilot program originally tested at a single Florida warehouse. The expanded program will be assessed for further development. Walmart also purchased a minority stake in manufacturer Fox Robotics.

In Sam’s Club news, most locations will add an in-store kiosk from wireless provider T-Mobile, as the two announced an exclusive partnership. Sam’s Club members will have access to phones and other hardware, as well as T-Mobile customer service and support. Club members will also receive gift cards or other discounts for signing up for T-Mobile services at the kiosks.

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