retail news in context, analysis with attitude

Florida Today reports that Winn-Dixie, “facing bankruptcy woes and store closings, is jumping on the home delivery bandwagon.

“The company announced today it will partner with the grocery service Shipt, and will offer same-day delivery … Beginning today (April 3), shoppers will be able to get items from Winn-Dixie stores delivered right to their doorstep.” To access the service, the story notes, customers have to pay $99 a year for a Shipt membership.

As Florida Today writes, “The announcement comes amid a shakeup at Winn-Dixie's parent company, Southeastern Grocers. The company filed for bankruptcy in March and will close stores across the southeast, including 35 in Florida … Southeastern Grocers also owns Harveys Supermarket, Bi-Lo and Fresco y Mas.  However, those stores are not included in the Shipt partnership.”
KC's View:
The first thing I thought when I saw this story was, better late than never. The second thing I thought was, maybe not … especially since Winn-Dixie is using a delivery service owned by Target - which, last I checked, is a competitor.

I may be wrong about this, because I’m not in Florida and am visiting Winn-Dixie stores with any regularity. But this somehow feels like a box that needs to be checked off, as opposed to part of broader strategy designed to create a strategy - for both stores and online - that will make the company’s retailing offering compelling, relevant and differentiated.

Winn-Dixie can emerge from bankruptcy, but it will take a lot more than moves like this, as well as the closing of some stores and elimination of some debt, to help it emerge from irrelevance.