Walmart will launch a fintech start-up designed to develop and offer “modern, innovative and affordable financial solutions.”
The new company is being developed is a strategic partnership with fintech investment firm Ribbit Capital, one of the venture capital firms behind Robinhood. Walmart said the new initiative will combine its retail knowledge and scale with Ribbit’s fintech expertise to deliver tech-driven financial experiences tailored to Walmart customers and employees.
In comments to Chain Store Age, Bankrate chief financial analyst Greg McBride called Walmart’s plan to start a fintech "a watershed moment for consumers and competitors alike."
"What all they will offer and when it will be available are still to be determined, but one thing is for sure – it will be low cost," he said. "Walmart’s offering will be unlike what we’ve seen from fintech startups, with a massive, built-in customer and employee base and the scale to be a formidable competitor right off the bat.”
The new company, whose name was not revealed, will be majority-owned by Walmart. Its board will include John Furner, president and CEO, Walmart U.S.; Brett Biggs, executive VP and CFO, Walmart; and Meyer Malka, managing partner of Ribbit Capital. The company plans to add independent industry experts to the board and to build a management team of experienced fintech leaders. It anticipates that growth may come through partnerships and acquisitions with leading fintech companies.
“For years, millions of customers have put their trust in Walmart to not only save them money when they shop with us but help them manage their financial needs. And they’ve made it clear they want more from us in the financial services arena,” stated Furner. “We’re thrilled to work with Ribbit Capital in a new venture to help us deliver innovative and needed options to our customers and associates – with speed and at scale.”