Walmart shuts down Jet black personal shopping service

'Our technology will be rolling into Walmart to power its conversational commerce capabilities,' the service said

Walmart's personal shopping and delivery unit, Jet black, is shutting down its operations, the New York City-based service has announced on its website.

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The unprofitable smartphone app service will be unavailable to customers starting on Feb. 21, and customers' $50 monthly subscriptions will be returned, the company said in its announcement.

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"Our technology will be rolling into Walmart to power its conversational commerce capabilities and build new experiences for customers," Jet black's post reads.

Nearly 300 of Jet black's 350 employees will be let go while some who work on the design and technology team will join Walmart's wider customer organization team, The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday.

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"We are looking forward to our next chapter, and to the opportunity to serve you again in the future," the post says.

Walmart discussed potential investment in the service last year with Microsoft and a number of venture-capital firms, the Journal reported, but it eventually lost too much money.

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Jet black customers paid $600 per year to have anything except fresh food --- from any store --- picked up and delivered via text requests. The company had less than a thousand customers as of 2019 and was losing about $15,000 per member annually as of summer 2109, the Journal reported.