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The Smart Techie was renamed Siliconindia India Edition starting Feb 2012 to continue the nearly two decade track record of excellence of our US edition.

May - 2012 - issue > View Point

Customers need Seamless Shopping Experience

Jeremy King
Senior VP & CTO-@Wal-Mart Labs
Thursday, May 3, 2012
Jeremy King
Over last five months Bentonville, Arkansas headquartered the world's largest retail company Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE: WMT) is aggressively focusing the India operations through building its global e-commerce unit Walmart Labs with a strong focus on social and digital technology. As a part of this move, it started its @WalmartLabs operation in Bangalore with the hiring of 100 additional developers. @WalmartLabs, a unit of Walmart Global e-Commerce creates platforms and products around social and mobile commerce. It works on creating the innovative ways to connect with prospective customers. It intend to support Walmart’s global strategy of anytime, anywhere access where millions of customers can discover, research and shop for products through mobile devices, online or at physical stores. Since its inception, @WalmartLabs has been actively scouting for acquisitions. In November, it acquired Grabble, a maker of point of sale technology that ties in with mobile phones. Now Jeremy King and Anand Rajaraman are on a hot seat pushing their team to get 100 skilled people to create a next-generation e-commerce platform. The new platform is designed to connect Walmart’s digital and physical properties worldwide giving customers and suppliers a seamless way to interact and shop across any device or store anywhere in the world. The company is looking to recruit engineering talent in the areas of high scale computing, network infrastructure, systems administration and big data. In a candid conversation, Jeremy King, Senior Vice President & CTO of @WalmartLabs, shares his view on opportunities and challenges that the new wave of technology can bring in.

Emerging trends shaping the industry

I spent many years at eBay where we saw rapid changes in the technology landscape for e-commerce 1.0. Today, we are at e-Commerce 2.0 and the changes are coming faster and are more transformational than before. The advent of social and mobile and the over one billion people that are on the Internet today is resulting in fundamental changes to the way shoppers discover, research and purchase items. When you combine the Internet, mobile and social with retail, you have the next-generation of commerce, and that’s where Walmart is focused currently.

New technologies that a CTO should bet on

Today, we are witnessing a transformation in the way people shop largely due to the proliferation of mobile and social. This is driving a fundamental change in customer shopping behavior. More and more every day, customers expect retailers to offer a seamless shopping experience across physical stores, online and mobile devices or "anytime, anywhere" access. With our global scale combined with our commitment to technology innovation -- for example the formation of @WalmartLabs and addition of key talent -- we are well positioned to succeed in the next-generation of e-commerce.


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