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Kohls’ Partnership with Amazon, US Foods B2B Ecommerce Site, and Tyres4U B2B2C Strategy

Kohl’s Successful Amazon Partnership

Kohls, like most department store retail chains, has been experiencing lackluster sales. Its total revenue fell 3.1% in the second 2019 fiscal quarter, and its sales declined 3.3%. While sales are lagging, Kohls is optimistic a certain ecommerce giant will give them a boost. In 2017, Kohls partnered with Amazon for an experimental new program where the retailer accepts Amazon returns in select stores. As of July 2019, this program has been expanded to all Kohls stores. The objective of this partnership is to drive traffic to Kohls stores, and the program is now starting to see desired results, as the retailer is experiencing an increase in new and existing shoppers returning to physical stores. “We are off to a good start with the back-to-school season and are confident that our upcoming brand launches, program expansions, and increased traffic from the Amazon returns program will incrementally contribute to our performance during the balance of the year and beyond,” says Kohls CEO Michelle Gas.

What stood out to us?

Target’s strategy is to leverage its retail footprint to compete for local delivery, local pickup and better omni-channel experiences. Walmart’s strategy is to leverage its retail footprint to compete for local delivery, local pickup and better omni-channel experiences. Kohl’s strategy is to leverage its retail footprint to accept Amazon return orders.

US Foods’ New B2B Ecommerce Site

Food-service distributor US Foods Inc. has just launched US Foods Direct, a new B2B ecommerce site. US Foods Direct offers an “endless aisle” of more than 40,000 uncommon products not usually stocked by food suppliers, such as unique sauces, spices, plant-based proteins, and gluten or dairy-free alternatives. The platform was created when US Foods recognized that many of its restaurant customers wanted an easier way to discover and purchase hard-to-specialty foods. “Our customers are always looking for new products and ingredients so their menus can evolve to meet consumers’ tastes,” says Nick Underhill, senior director, corporate strategy at US Foods. “Customer research and feedback told us we needed another ecommerce option to meet this need.”

What stood out to us?

This is a better strategy than taking Sysco’s return orders.

Tyres4U Outlines New B2B2C Strategy

Tyres4U is a tire wholesaler based out of Australia. The company has been selling online for over eight years, and is now ready to further grow by partnering with auto industry suppliers and service providers to launch a white-labeled version of its B2C ecommerce site, The platform, which offers key new features such as providing pricing and availability of tires by location, is part of a larger strategy to build out the company’s B2B2C business. As part of this strategy, for example, Tyres4U has partnered with three Australian automotive clubs to enable the clubs to connect online and increase sales to motorists. “Our focus is on growth and we see our ecommerce platform as a way for partners to enhance the services they provide their customers,” says Daniel Wright, chief digital officer for Tyres4U. “As a wholesaler, we carry multiple brands, unlike our competitors that commit to one or two manufacturers, which is a point of differentiation for us.”

What stood out to us?


In the headlines

  • Forever Chapter 11: Fashion retailer Forever 21 is seeking additional financing as it prepares for bankruptcy.
  • Please Enjoy:  Former Apple VP of retail operations Ron Johnson’s ecommerce startup Enjoy recently raised $150M.
  • Black Friday Prep: Best Buy opened three new metro ecommerce centers ahead of the holiday season.
  • Maybe Walmart Should Slow Down: A new Gallup survey found that 81% of U.S. consumers have never bought groceries online.

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