Walmart announced a new display self-serve platform launching later this year that will enable advertisers to activate and manage display campaigns with automation capabilities powered by ad-tech company Thunder.

Walmart acquired Thunder’s IP and technology, which will offer creative versioning, testing and optimization to help advertisers increase their return on ad spend (ROAS).

“While we expect our largest suppliers to adopt automation technology fastest, we are building this new platform to scale for Marketplace sellers and suppliers of all sizes,” the company said in a press release.

The news follows the retailer’s media business rebrand, from Walmart Media Group to Walmart Connect, with an expanded vision comprising three strategic areas.

First, Walmart is growing offerings across its digital properties—, pickup and delivery and the Walmart app—which saw nearly double the amount of revenue and more than double the number of advertisers last fiscal year.

The company is also launching new omnichannel capabilities that enable advertisers to reach its millions of in-store shoppers each week. These include media activations on in-store TV walls and self check-out screens with nearly 170,000 digital screens across more than 4,500 stores. Walmart’s stores and digital properties see 150 million weekly visitors.

Lastly, Walmart has partnered with The Trade Desk to launch a demand-side platform for suppliers and their media ad agencies to drive performance outside of Walmart’s proprietary sites using first-party shopper data.  

Walmart’s first major attempt at competing with Amazon, Google and Facebook came in 2019 when it held an event to pitch its ad business to hundreds of companies including Unilever, NBC Universal and Mattel. Since then, it has launched various in-house ad solutions like its Advertising Partners program, Sponsored Product Interface and Performance Reporting Dashboards.

To keep up with shifting consumer behaviors during the pandemic, in September Walmart unveiled a new modern store design focused on digitally-enabled shopping experiences. The retailer’s new exterior and interior signage reflects the Walmart app icon, and its stores now include self-checkout kiosks and contactless payment options.