Albertsons Cos. has formed a partnership with Firework, a short-form video platform designed to bring a shoppable, livestream video experience to any website. The food retailer is the first U.S. grocer to employ the Firework platform to bring online shoppers a community-oriented experience led by shoppable, short-form and livestream video.
“This partnership is an important step in Albertsons Cos.’ digital transformation journey to redefine customer engagement in the grocery retail space,” noted Chris Rupp, chief customer and digital officer at Albertsons. “This isn’t just about creating new ways to feature our products. This is about bringing delight and inspiration to digital shopping to make online experiences as fun as discovering new products in our stores. With Firework, we found the first platform capable of digitally recreating the sense of freshness, discovery and community that you previously could only find within our stores, all using the video and livestream formats that our digital shoppers love most.”
Firework enables its customers to easily create, host and curate immersive short-form and livestream video on any site on the open web, effectively allowing any business to own, engage and monetize an active community around short-form video. Swipeable, shoppable interactivity permits consumers to engage directly with brand and product videos, and on-site hosting gives businesses direct access to the consumer data and monetization opportunities arising from their shoppable video content. Firework also offers retailers the opportunity to sell “digital shelf space” to brands they carry in the form of video ad placement, for additional sources of revenue.
The end-to-end implementation at Albertsons will consist of three distinct phases. In the first phase, the retailer will use Firework to post short video content and cooking experiences on the various banner websites. The partnership plans to expand offerings and experiences in 2022.
“We’re inspired by Albertsons’ dedication to being at the forefront of grocery retail customer experience, charting the path toward a new gold standard of online shopping and brand engagement,” said Firework President of Global Business Jason Holland. “By hosting its own swipeable, shoppable video content to meet its customers where they are, Albertsons will lead the industry in preference-driven digital experience, turning customers into entertainment fans.”
“The Firework platform gives brands the power to build a human connection with their audiences — within their own domain and on their own terms, using the most in-demand, modern and effective video formats,” said Vincent Yang, co-founder and CEO of Redwood City, Calif.-based company. “Firework is redefining the future of video-first Web 3.0 with distributed, decentralized hosting, and is here to enable every business to reclaim ownership of its brand, its community and the opportunities therein.”
Accelerated by the pandemic, Firework has experienced tenfold year-over-year growth, providing TikTok-like interactive video experiences by adding just one line of HTML code to its own website. The company is backed by IDG Capital, Lightspeed Venture Partners and GSR Ventures, with more than $100 million in capital raised so far.
Boise, Idaho-based Albertsons operates more than 2,200 retail stores with 1,700-plus pharmacies, 400 associated fuel centers, 22 dedicated distribution centers and 20 manufacturing facilities. The company’s stores predominantly operate under the Albertsons, Safeway, Vons, Pavilions, Randalls, Tom Thumb, Carrs, Jewel-Osco, Acme, Shaw’s, Star Market, United Supermarkets, Kings Food Markets and Haggen banners. Albertsons is No. 8 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2021 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America.