Tuesday, May 22, 2018
Business

Walmart adding Bonobos to its online portfolio

NEW YORK — Walmart is buying online men's clothing retailer Bonobos for $310 million in cash, showing that its appetite for hip clothing brands shows no sign of abating as it looks for ways to gain on Amazon.

It's a sign of the aggressive direction Walmart is taking since buying Jet.com last year and keeping that company's founder as head of its online division. Walmart has since bought clothing seller ModCloth, footwear retailer ShoeBuy.com and outdoor gear seller Moosejaw as it focuses on brands appealing to younger shoppers.

Bonobos, which started out selling pants online, caters to male shoppers looking for help putting together a wardrobe.

Targeting Bonobos is a good move for Walmart as it tries to compete with Amazon, which has been quickly expanding its clothing business, says internet consultant Sucharita Mulpuru-Kodal. "If you roll up enough of these online startups, you create a meaningful share" of business, she said. She noted that Walmart can learn from these millennial customers.

The news came amid Amazon's bold move into brick-and-mortar stores Friday by saying it would buy Whole Foods in a deal valued at about $13.7 billion.

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