BEIJING / NEW YORK: Walmart Inc has opened its first small high-tech supermarket in China, where smartphones can be used to store money. on April 2.
The world's largest retailer, known for its hypermarkets, is expanding in China as well as in retailers and technology companies such as Alibaba Group Holding Ltd and Tencent Holdings Ltd to integrate online and offline shopping.
Walmart had a few smaller Walmart stores in the United States, with 12,000 to 15,000 square feet, compared with about 105,000 square feet for its typical supermarket. But the concept was not taken off and the retailer was forced to shut them down in 2016.
Walmart did not specify the size of the China store in the southern city of Shenzhen. The company did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The outlet will stock more than 8,000 items from stir-fried clams to fresh fruit, 90 percent of which will be available online, it said in a statement. Items can be delivered within a two-kilometer (1.2 mile) radius as quickly as 29 minutes, said Walmart, which owns a stake in JD.com.
Customers can opt to pay with their smartphone using a program on Tencent Holding Ltd's WeChat messaging.
In March, Walmart said it would expand its grocery home deliveries in key markets to reach more than 40% of US households, or 100 metro areas from six currently. – Reuters