Walmart is gearing up for nationwide drone delivery, following a successful pilot program that showcased the possibilities.
Drone deliveries are seen as one of the next major steps for retail, with Amazon, Walmart and others exploring the technology. Last year, Walmart partnered with DroneUp to test the viability of drone deliveries, and the results were promising. In fact, the company discovered it could cut delivery time from hours to mere minutes.
In view of the success of the pilot program, Walmart is doubling down on drone deliveries with an investment in DroneUp.
Now, after safely completing hundreds of drone deliveries from Walmart stores, we’re making an investment in DroneUp to continue our work toward developing a scalable last-mile delivery solution.
The company is touting its infrastructure, thanks to its thousands of stores around the US, as a major asset to successful drone operations.
Walmart already has a significant part of the infrastructure in place – 4,700 stores stocked with more than 100,000 of the most-purchased items, located within 10 miles of 90% of the U.S. population. This makes us uniquely positioned to execute drone deliveries, which is why our investment in DroneUp won’t just apply to the skies but also the ground. In the coming months we’ll be beginning our first operation at a store in Bentonville, Arkansas.
Walmart has been looking for ways to take on Amazon, and drones that deliver products in minutes is a big step in that direction.