Bed Bath & Beyond just made a five-year commitment to Google Cloud as the pandemic pushes it towards a pivot to e-commerce (BBBY, GOOG, GOOGL)

Bed Bath & Beyond

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Bed Bath & Beyond has “ramped up rapidly” to grow its digital business amid the coronavirus pandemic.

To reach customers who are ordering products online, the home goods retailer has adopted practices like curbside pickup and also converted a quarter of its stores into regional fulfillment centers to double its capacity for delivery and pickup.

To keep up with that higher demand for e-commerce, Bed Bath & Beyond announced Thursday a five-year agreement with Google Cloud, with Deloitte serving as the consulting partner helping make it happen. While the retailer audited multiple clouds, it decided to bet on Google Cloud as its only provider.

Bed Bath & Beyond already had an ongoing relationship with Google Cloud to migrate data to the cloud, but this expanded partnership allows Bed Bath & Beyond to speed up the pace with which it updates its technology, says Bed Bath & Beyond COO John Hartmann. 

Bed Bath & Beyond is going through a “massive transformation” right now, Hartmann says. Under the leadership of CEO Mark Tritton, it brought in a brand new executive team and is focusing on modernizing its business in the name of better serving customers. The combination of Google Cloud and Deloitte will help Bed Bath & Beyond deliver a “personal shopping experience” for customers, he says.

“We made some strong pivots,” Hartmann told Business Insider. “The relationship with Google will accelerate our capabilities in areas like machine learning, analytics, enhance and optimize what we’re doing currently. It will also create further improvements.”

Right now, Bed Bath & Beyond with Google Cloud and Deloitte are working on a three year roadmap to update its applications. It plans to use Google’s data warehousing service BigQuery to grow its AI and analytical capabilities to gather insights from data on its core markets and project future sales trends. 

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With Google Cloud’s AI capabilities, Bed Bath & Beyond plans to better support customers’ shopping experience, from search navigation to checkout. In addition, it can also help make its inventory, fulfillment, and merchandising processes more efficient. 

“As we work through this end to end modernization, the relationship with Google will just really accelerate our capabilities,” Hartmann said. “For example, being focused on data and allowing our decision making to be driven by our customers’ desires is really important to us.”

Bed Bath & Beyond now becomes another marquee customer for Google Cloud as it pushes to win over customers in specific industries, like retail. Previously, the market research firm Canalys even called Google Cloud the leading cloud in the retail sector.

Read more: A market research firm says Google Cloud is now the leading cloud in the retail industry, partially because retailers don’t want to work with Amazon Web Services

Canalys said that Google Cloud stands out because of its ability to offer advertising and search services on top of traditional cloud hosting. In addition, while some retail customers may worry about working with the market-leading Amazon Web Services because of fears of direct competition with the retailer, that’s …read more

Source:: Business Insider


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