Car Industry

Walmart ends grocery partnership with Uber

The change comes soon after Uber said it's eliminating its on-demand delivery service called UberRush.

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Walmart won't be catching rides with Uber anymore.

Steve Heap / Getty Images / Canopy

Walmart said Tuesday it's ending its two-year partnership with Uber to deliver groceries to people's homes, following the demise of Uber's on-demand delivery service called UberRush.

Walmart will continue to use UberRush in four US markets through June, until the service shuts down. After that, Walmart will transition to another delivery service in those markets, Walmart spokeswoman Molly Blakeman said.

The change, first reported by Reuters on Tuesday, comes just a few months after Walmart unveiled a big expansion of its grocery delivery service across the US in a bid to challenge Amazon's push into groceries. Losing the ride-hailing company could be seen as a setback to Walmart's efforts, though the retailer does have a handful of other partners to lean on, including Deliv, Postmates and DoorDash.

Reuters also reported that Walmart had ended its partnership with Lyft to deliver groceries too. However, Blakeman said the partnership was a short-lived tie-up in Denver in 2016 and that Walmart hasn't worked with Lyft since then.

Amazon has been working to expand in the roughly $800 billion US grocery market, with its $13.2 billion deal to buy Whole Foods in 2017 and growth of its online grocery business. Walmart remains the No. 1 grocery seller in the country, with Amazon currently a distant competitor.

Looking to maintain that lead, Walmart in March said it would expand its online grocery delivery business to 100 US metro areas, up from six test markets, by year's end. Walmart is now delivering groceries in nine markets, Blakeman said, with Las Vegas added Tuesday.

Walmart plans to operate the service from about 800 stores, using its team of personal shoppers to pick up items and then handing off deliveries to partners like Deliv and DoorDash.