Mercoledì, 19 Dicembre, 2018

Amazon Charts Future of Food Shopping with Whole Foods Deal

A Wall Street sign near the New York A Wall Street sign near the New York Stock Exchange on Sept. 30 2008
Parmenio Sano | 20 Giugno, 2017, 21:03

Under the Amazon deal, it would continue operating stores under its Whole Foods banner, co-founder John Mackey would remain CEO, and Whole Foods would stay headquartered in Austin, Texas.

However, Wal-Mart's shares fell 6.5 percent to $73.78 in morning trading after Amazon said it would buy upmarket grocer Whole Foods Market in a $13.7 billion deal.

"They're doing an awesome job and we want that to continue", Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos said.

Armed with giant warehouses, shopper data, the latest technology and almost endless funds - and now with Whole Foods' hundreds of physical stores - Amazon is set to reshape a US$800 billion grocery market that is already changing rapidly. The Seattle-based company had net sales of $35.7 billion in the first quarter, which ended March 31, up from $29.1 billion in first quarter of 2016. Groceries account for a large amount of Americans spending money, and it is an $800 billion market in the United States. "Now, we can see in hindsight that its recent dithering around the brick-and-mortar experience, as an experiment, was only a rumbling of the seismic event in the offing".

For Amazon, the Whole Foods acquisition does more than just leapfrog over the technical difficulties it has had in implementing its grocery plans.

The shock that many people felt when looking at their receipts gave Whole Foods the pejorative nickname "Whole Paycheck".

"It's too soon to say if we would reconsider or change anything" about the relationship with Amazon Prime Now, Hardy said.


The deal represents another example of Amazon moving away from its online roots and pushing into the physical retail world. Consumers are buying more from outside of traditional supermarkets.

"Limited-assortment" grocers, such as Kettering's Trader Joe's - stores that typically sell private-label goods and less variety in general - are growing quickly now.

The deal further shows Amazon's willingness to take on Bricks and Mortar (B&M) outlets.

Whole Foods sent a letter to customers after the merger announcement, calling the agreement a new chapter in Whole Foods' history and an incredible opportunity.

The deal, expected to close in the second half of this year, gives Amazon -- which has been experimenting with various physical store concepts to make establish itself as a food purveyor - an instant expanse of 460 high-end stores across the US, in Canada and in the United Kingdom. The companies said they expect to close the transaction during the second half of 2017.

It is unclear how Amazon will use Whole Foods, as the company would not go into detail about its plans.

About 450: Number of Whole Foods stores across the country. Amazon (amzn) shares surged more than $23 Friday, an increase of about 2.4%. And it should be able to bring cost-cutting technologies, such as robots to move inventory around, while the company gets a better picture of customers by marrying data from Amazon and Whole Foods' loyalty programs.

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