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We’re hearing that Walmart Labs, the e-commerce arm of the American retail giant, has acquired a Sydney, Australia-based startup called Grabble, which makes point-of-sale technology that ties in with consumers’ mobile phones.
It’s a huge coup for the team at Grabble and for Startmate, the Ozzie outfit in which it was incubated. Startmate aims to be an Australian version of Y Combinator or 500 Startups, incubating innovative startup founders and providing them with seed funding and business plan guidance. Grabble was founded by two Sydney-based engineers who will be joining Walmart Labs in Silicon Valley post-deal.
Terms of the acquisition haven’t been disclosed, but I’m hearing that Startmate investors are quite happy with the deal.
Walmart is known to have established its lead in the brick-and-mortar retail space by investing in cutting-edge technology to manage its warehouses, so the Grabble deal is evidence that it’s committing to bringing 21st-century tech to the front of the house as well. It’ll be interesting to see how they invest their considerable amount of dollars going forward, and it’s notable that they’re looking well beyond the Silicon Valley looking for innovations. Stay tuned.