U.S.

Grocers facing a united Amazon-Whole Foods must adapt

Grocers facing a united Amazon-Whole Foods must adapt

In addition to the retail industry, Amazon is looking to shake things up for the grocery industry with a proposed $13.7 billion purchase of Whole Foods-engulfing the market in chaos in the process.

Bug fixes, plus nighty nighty to Apple Watch and iOS 9 support. It might not be hard for Wal-Mart - or Target - to match the quality and price of products offered, but Amazon has an advantage in the form of its loyal Prime customer base and its AmazonFresh and Amazon Go offerings.

It's not yet clear what specific changes are in store at either Amazon or Whole Foods, since the two companies are saying little about their plans.

Whole Foods has 430 stores across the US, Canada and the United Kingdom, which gives Amazon ample opportunities in different locations to test the waters with new ideas.

Amazon, known for its competitive prices, is trying to attract more low- and middle-income shoppers with its grocery push. This would represent a more-than-half-a-million-dollar bet that Whole Foods will be above $43.52 come the middle of August.

"Taking a step back in the sector at large, we continue to believe investors will have more defense vs. AMZN's domination if they follow our Super Stock theory - we think deep value companies or luxury goods companies are more Un-Amazon-Able and less vulnerable to share losses vs. Amazon". Walmart also has the advantage of appealing to lower-income consumers and having stores within 10 miles of 90% of most American homes. In an email to customers, the company said it planned to maintain the same standards under Amazon, including bans on artificial flavors and colors.




Amazon's purchase of Whole Foods ups the stakes in this battle of giant retailers by giving Amazon not just the physical spaces, but also the knowledge on how to run them.

The Seattle-headquartered e-commerce giant is considering replacing Whole Foods cashiers with technology, according to the report.

Completion of the transaction is subject to approval by Whole Foods Market's shareholders, regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions. If somebody could convince Wal-Mart Stores Inc CEO Doug McMillon to say he has no interest in buying WFM that could go a long way.

It is doubtful that beer distribution was the driving force behind the acquisition of Whole Foods, but it will have a material impact on the industry and the relationship between the three tiers. Rumors already have Amazon making drastic changes to the store's format, now focused on organic groceries and prepared goods.

Amazon's stock was recently up 0.8 percent at $995.86 in mid-day trades. It is also a shrewd move from Amazon to acquire a well-respected grocer with a strong physical presence and loyalty base already, as it means they will already have a strong customer following, but it'll be interesting to see how they move the brand forward into the digital age.


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