Walmart partnership driving change for delivery
Over the years Walmart has been doing a lot to learn more about the role autonomous vehicles can play in retail, and the company said it has seen enough to know it’s no longer a question of if they’ll be scaled, but when.
"Today we’re taking the next step in our work with autonomous vehicles by making an investment in Cruise, the San Francisco-based company enabling a self-driving future through their all-electric fleet of self-driving cars," said John Furner, Walmart's president and CEO. "The investment will aid our work toward developing a last mile delivery ecosystem that’s fast, low-cost and scalable."
Walmart began working with Cruise in November of last year developing a delivery pilot in Scottsdale, AZ. "We’ve been impressed with Cruise’s differentiated business model, unique technology and unmatched driverless testing," said Furner. "We also value our shared commitment to a zero emissions future."
As delivery has become a staple in Walmart's customers’ lives, it is focused on growing its last mile ecosystem in a way that’s beneficial for everyone — customers, business and the planet. With their all-electric fleet powered by 100 percent renewable energy, Walmart said Cruise is a natural partner as it works to take collective action on climate change. "We’re doing this not only in our own operations where we are targeting zero emissions by 2040 and have set a goal to be powered by 100 percent renewable energy by 2035, but also throughout the supply chain and our environmental initiative, Project Gigaton, one of the largest private sector consortiums for climate action," said Furner.
"This investment is a marker for us — it shows our commitment to bringing the benefit of self-driving cars to our customers and business," he added. "We’re excited to join Cruise’s already impressive partner and investor ecosystem with the likes of GM, Honda and Microsoft as we work toward pioneering this emerging technology."