Our personal shoppers will deliver to ‘your kitchen table’

Business


Shopping is going to get even easier in 2018, said Target Chairman and CEO Brian Cornell.

“Now with Shipt, if you order, in a couple of hours, I’ll put it right on your kitchen table,” Cornell told CNBC during the “Fast Money Halftime Report.” CNBC was in Minneapolis, home to Target headquarters, for Sunday’s Super Bowl.

Target acquired Shipt, a same-day grocery delivery service and rival to Instacart, for approximately $550 million in December. On Thursday, the discount retailer started rolling out the service to customers in parts of Florida. The plan is to continue to expand it throughout the year.

The retailer also is expanding other services to make it easier for shoppers to buy products online and pick them up at the store.

“In many markets, you’ll be able to drive right into our parking lot [and] our team member will put that order in your truck,” he said.

Cornell’s comments come in the midst of continued pressure from competitors such as Walmart and Amazon. A day earlier, Amazon released fourth-quarter earnings, beating analyst expectations.

But Cornell said he isn’t worried about his competition, even calling Walmart “a great competitor.”

“We’ll continue to play our game,” Cornell said. “What I worry about is our own execution.”

“For us, the fourth quarter, it’s our Super Bowl. And our team performed really well. I certainly expect that momentum to carry on into 2018.”

Earlier this month, Target reported same-store sales growth of 3.4 percent during the 2017 holiday season, beating expectations. The improved performance follows the rollout of new private label brands and store remodeling.

In 2017, Target revamped more than 110 of its stores. Cornell said he plans to remodel 300 in 2018 and open new stores while expanding the Target digital presence, making Shipt available across the country.

Target will also move more stores into urban areas, such as New York City, Boston and Chicago, as well as to college campuses, according to Cornell. Some of these are smaller-format locations, where shoppers can rush in and rush out, quickly grabbing items on the go.

The CEO pointed out that Target, unlike rival Walmart, has a much more “balanced portfolio,” which includes apparel, home goods, electronics and grocery. Food accounts for only 20 percent of the brand, compared with 60 percent of Walmart’s products.



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