Once touted as a serious threat to Amazon, startup retailer Jet.com is reportedly in acquisition talks.
Walmart is in talks to buy online retailer Jet.com, the Wall Street Journal reported on Wednesday, citing people familiar with the matter. It was not clear how much Walmart would pay, but Jet.com could be worth as much as $3 billion, the WSJ said.
Walmart declined to comment. Jet.com, considered a formidable competitor to Amazon, was not available for comment.
Walmart is investing heavily in its online business to take on Amazon, but it has struggled on that front. The retailer’s online business posted its slowest growth in a year in the latest quarter. Walmart’s online sales were $13.7 billion in 2015, according to research firm Internet Retailer.
Marc Lore launched Jet.com in July last year, promising big discounts in exchange for members placing large orders and paying an annual fee. Lore in 2010 sold his diapers-to-soap e-commerce firm Quidsi to Amazon for $540 million, and once his non-compete clause expired he set about launching another Amazon competitor.
Walmart shares, which were marginally higher earlier, were off 0.2 percent at $72.96 in late morning trading.
(Reporting by Sruthi Ramakrishnan in Bengaluru; Editing by Savio D’Souza)
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