Walmart to create fintech startup with Ribbit Capital

Andrew Cummings
January 13, 2021

It did not provide the name of the company but shared that the venture was developed in a strategic partnership with investment firm Ribbit Capital. The new company will be owned by Walmart and its board of directors will include several executives, including Walmart US boss John Furner and the company's chief financial officer Brett Pix. "We're thrilled to work with Ribbit Capital in a new venture to help us deliver innovative and needed options to our customers and associates - with speed and at scale".

"Walmart has a relationship with millions of customers and associates built on trust, security and integrity", Meyer Malka, managing partner, Ribbit Capital, says. Contacted by HomeWorld Business, a Walmart spokesperson said specific details about what financial services the partnership would offer are not yet available. The startup, which has yet to be named, will add more board members, and hire a management team. "And they've made it clear they want more from us in the financial services arena". Growth may come through additional partnership arrangements and acquisitions with leading fintech companies, Walmart noted.

Ribbit Capital's current investment portfolio includes mobile investment platform Robinhood and consumer technology platform Credit Karma.

"By offering affordable insurance plans with an open network of doctors and hospitals, we are democratising high-quality care and bringing it to individuals and communities that have previously been overlooked by other insurers". The retailer's fintech flirtation, more specifically, comes after new United States regulations made it easier for non-banks to get into the lending business. About 16% are "underbanked", meaning that they have a bank account but also use alternative financial service products such as a money order.

Walmart may be taking its global experience to heart as it builds financial services. Each week, over 265 million customers and members visit approximately 11,400 stores under 55 banners in 26 countries and eCommerce websites.

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