With Amazon in Sight, IBM Will Offer Retail Clients Same-Day Delivery Tool
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Big retail companies that work with IBM to run their stores’ technology systems have been asking for an easy way to offer their customers a same-day delivery option on their purchases. IBM has now chosen a partner to try to make that a reality.
The company will announce on Wednesday that its retail customers can now integrate with a startup called Deliv to let shoppers get products delivered on the same day for purchases made over the phone, in store or through their e-commerce websites and apps.
Deliv, which was founded in 2012, employs a network of part-time drivers who receive orders via smartphone and go collect orders at malls and individual brick-and-mortar stores before whisking them off to shoppers’ homes. The company has previously inked partnerships with, and received investment from, major mall operators that help gather several orders from multiple retailers in one centralized spot to make the process more efficient.
“A lot of our clients are really looking at how do we more effectively compete against Amazon,” IBM’s Errol Denger said in an interview. Providing customers with every possible delivery option is becoming more critical.
He said Deliv stood out from competitors in several ways, including its route optimization software and its customer service.
Deliv is not a consumer-facing brand, instead choosing to serve as a white-label logistics partner to retailers. So part of its pitch to big brands is that it won’t get between them and their customers like same-day delivery services eBay Now and Google Shopping Express. Retailers pay Deliv a per-delivery fee, and then decide how or if they want to pass on the cost to their shoppers. Customers include Williams-Sonoma and 1-800-FLOWERS.com
Deliv CEO Daphne Carmeli said her company currently handles same-day deliveries for orders placed over the phone and in stores for 115 retailers in the San Francisco Bay Area, Los Angeles and Chicago, with plans to expand this summer to a bunch of new geographic regions, including New York, Miami and Seattle.
The company has not yet integrated into the checkout flow of many e-commerce sites, but Carmeli said Deliv is working on deals with more than a dozen big retailers to roll out same-day delivery integrations with their e-commerce shops in the second half of this year.
Deliv, which is based in Palo Alto, Calif., has raised more than $12 million from Upfront Ventures, Simon Property Group and other venture capital firms and shopping mall companies.