Bed Bath & Beyond has announced two major new initiatives as part of its ongoing transformation strategy — a strategic collaboration with Kroger and the launch of third-party digital marketplace — as well as a series of leadership changes to support these efforts. The announcements come just days after the home goods retailer unveiled a new partnership with Uber to offer on-demand delivery of baby and kids’ products.
As Bed Bath & Beyond continues to “redefine its business model” and “fortify its competitive positioning,” it has teamed up with the nation’s largest grocery retailer to offer Kroger customers a selection of home and baby products, available both on Kroger.com and in a small-scale physical store pilot at select stores across the Kroger family of brands beginning in 2022.
The multi-category omnichannel collaboration will include items ranging from bedding and storage to baby furniture and gear, pulled from both Bed Bath & Beyond and buybuy Baby‘s assortments, including the company’s Owned Brands as well as national brands. Another key piece of Bed Bath & Beyond’s transformation strategy has been a dramatic expansion of its private label offerings.
“Every day, we look for new and differentiated ways and experiences to meet our customers’ evolving needs and elevate and celebrate the moments that matter most to our customers,” said Rodney McMullen, Chairman and CEO of Kroger in a statement. “Bed Bath & Beyond has a compelling portfolio of products that complement the items our customers already love to shop. This strategic online collaboration and in-store pilot will provide Kroger shoppers easy access to essential home and baby products alongside their favorite grocery staples.”
Bed Bath & Beyond and buybuy Baby products will launch on Kroger.com by early 2022, enabled by Kroger’s Ship third-party marketplace, with a branded shop-in-shop experience pilot in select stores to follow later in the year.
Bed Bath & Beyond Adds to Marketplace Momentum
Bed Bath & Beyond also announced the launch of its own third-party digital marketplace as it seeks to expand its assortment of key products and build on its existing authority in the home and baby categories. The marketplace will feature products from a “highly curated selection” of third-party partners and will be integrated into the existing Bed Bath & Beyond digital platform.
The addition of a third-party marketplace is becoming a common growth driver among retailers looking to expand their ecommerce reach while minimizing the risks associated with sourcing and distributing additional products themselves.
“On my second anniversary as CEO, I am excited and inspired by the change and momentum we have created in this business as we continue to fortify our competitive positioning and customer acquisition strategy,” said Mark Tritton, President & CEO of Bed Bath and Beyond in a statement. “We are developing new avenues of long-term profitable growth to allow us to organically build on our existing authority in the home and baby categories.
“Our collaboration with an exceptional retailer like Kroger underscores Bed Bath & Beyond’s authority in the home and baby categories,” he added. “Our product assortment combined with Kroger’s customer base will present extensive opportunities for current and future customers.”
To support these shifts in the business, Bed Bath & Beyond has realigned some elements of its organizational infrastructure. Anu Gupta, who previously served as Chief Strategy and Transformation Officer, has been named to the newly created role of Chief Growth Officer. In this role Gupta will focus on internal and external growth opportunities, working cross-functionally to continue managing the company’s business transformation.
Additionally, Rafeh Masood, the company’s current Chief Digital Officer and interim Chief Brand Officer, has been named Chief Customer Officer, also a newly created role. Both appointments are effective immediately and both executives will report to Tritton. John Hartmann, COO of Bed Bath & Beyond and President of buybuy Baby, will be responsible for partnership execution in addition to continuing his leadership across IT and supply chain.