Flickr: Mike Mozart

Target Acquires Shipt for $550M with Huge Plans for Same-Day Delivery

Few of us truly enjoy grocery shopping. Sure, we make the best of it and head out to the store once a week or every two weeks with a smile, but it's often a time-consuming chore. With technology, grocery stores and brands are following Amazon's lead with Whole Foods and offering same-day grocery delivery or a similar promise. First we saw Costco announce its new delivery services to members, and now Target is joining the ranks.

After acquiring Shipt, a same-day delivery platform, for $550 million, Target announced that it would focus on offering same-day delivery services at approximately half of its stores by early 2018. Further, via press release, the brand stated it would offer same-day delivery from the majority of Target stores before the 2018 holiday season. This time next year, Target customers might not have to fight any crowds at all to get those limited-release M&M's or Oreo flavors.

John Mulligan, executive president and chief operating officer at Target, stated in the press release:

"By the 2018 holiday season, we will be servicing every major market across the country with same-day delivery, and Shipt's service-oriented approach aligns well with Target's commitment to delivering an exceptional shopping experience for our guests."

Shipt is based in Birmingham, Alabama and was founded in 2014 as a membership-based grocery marketplace and same-day delivery platform. Over 20,000 personal shoppers are employed through Shipt to fulfill orders and deliver within hours. This personal touch made it appealing to Target, a brand that focuses on connecting with the American household.

Bill Smith, the founder and CEO of Shipt echoed the positive sentiments, stating,

"We are very excited to partner with Target, one of the most loved retailers in the country with a reputation for supporting local communities. Partnering with Target and the national scale they provide allows Shipt to further accelerate our growth, bringing our service to more people, in more markets across the country. We'll continue growing our marketplace and membership base, working with a variety of retailers to drive scale and efficiencies. We look forward to introducing Target guests to the convenience of our same-day delivery services, with the level of personal attention only Shipt can provide."

When the program launches, the store will focus on offering unlimited deliveries with same-day service of groceries, electronics, household essentials, and other products to local shoppers. By the end of 2019, Target predicts that delivery will include all major product categories offered.

This is a huge change for shoppers across the U.S. who are already fans of the Amazon Prime Delivery promise. Do you think you'll use Target's same-day delivery program when it launches? It makes sense now, but it always seems like those delivery fees are so high, it's not worth it financially to use exclusively. We can only wonder which grocery chains will follow next.

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