In a time when it seems Amazon and Wal-Mart are attempting to beat each other to offering the absolute widest selection of products available at the lowest possible cost, Target is taking a different track. Target’s digital chief, Mike McNamara tells the Wall Street Journal “We aren’t going to add products to our website and stores just because they exist.” Khadeeja Safdar writes that instead of barreling headlong into the acquisition of any available online retailer, Target has taken a more cautious approach.
It remained on the sidelines when Wal-Mart paid $3.3 billion for discount retailer Jet.com last fall. Executives considered Jet overpriced and a poor fit with Target CEO Brian Cornell’s strategy to focus on high-margin categories such as apparel and home décor, according to people familiar with internal discussions.
Instead, Target, which has struggled with declining sales in its food department, was in advanced talks last summer to buy Sprouts Farmers Market Inc., a Phoenix-based chain of about 250 grocery stores. But it eventually walked away, people familiar with the discussions say. Sprouts declined to comment.
More recently, Target looked into acquiring an e-commerce player, including Boxed.com, an online service offering household essentials in bulk, people familiar with the discussions say.
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