India’s Flipkart, which is majority-owned by Walmart, launched an online wholesale service through an app in three cities of the country. The new “Flipkart Wholesale” app targets mom-and-pop stores and other small businesses and aims to compete with rival Amazon and other e-commerce players.
The platform is currently available for fashion apparels in the cities of Gurugram, Delhi and Bengaluru. Flipkart plans to expand the service to 20 more cities and in categories such as groceries by the end of the year. Flipkart also hopes to add more than 200,000 products in two months and work with around 250 local manufacturers in the next few days. (See WMT stock analysis on TipRanks).
Flipkart’s move followed the official launch of Walmart’s (WMT) Walmart+ subscription membership program, which will be available from Sept. 15 for $98 per year. The program promises free same-day deliveries on groceries and general merchandise and other saving schemes. Walmart’s membership program will offer similar services to Amazon Prime, which costs $119 a year. Amazon Prime also offers unlimited one- and two-day shipping and same-day deliveries for an additional fee.
Credit Suisse analyst Seth Sigman said that Walmart+ gives the company “an opportunity to deepen customer relationships and gain better data”. Sigman maintains a Buy rating and a price target of $135 (8.4% downside potential).
Currently, the Street has a cautiously optimistic outlook on the stock. The Moderate Buy analyst consensus is based on 19 Buys and 7 Holds. The average price target of $147.21 implies that shares are fully priced at current levels. Shares have advanced over 26% year-to-date.