Amazon Keeps On Go-ing and Go-ing
Amazon has big plans for Amazon Go, its no-checkout convenience store. Really big plans. From its current humble four-store base, the company is considering adding upwards of 3,000 (!) locations over the next three years, bringing its unique brand of disruption to 7-Eleven, Subway and other quick-bite shops.
According to unnamed sources, CEO Jeff Bezos believes he can improve the lunchtime experience by eliminating long queues in bustling downtowns. His only concern: whether to stock groceries too or simply focus on prepared meals. Amazon declined to comment.
See the full story at Bloomberg.
Snapchat’s Got A Brand New (Shopping) Bag
There’s a new trick afoot for users of the popular messaging app Snapchat: Aim your mobile camera at a barcode or object of desire and, abracadabra, you can buy it on Amazon.
The new visual-search feature has just entered test mode, parent company Snap said in a blog, and will be rolled out slowly to get it right. With the new ability Snap is also hoping to get its share price right, which has lost nearly two-thirds of its valuation since going public in March.
Red, White & Whew
In a celebration of American entrepreneurship — and perhaps to deflect criticism from the Trump administration — Amazon has created a 20,000-store section on its site featuring small- and medium-size businesses from all 50 states.
Rather than putting them out of business, the new “Amazon Storefronts” demonstrates the company’s commitment to mom-and-pops, said VP Nicholas Denissen, and will further champion their success by hosting videos of company owners and their stories. Amazon is supporting the launch with its first national TV commercial featuring third-party sellers, which have helped create more than 900,000 jobs worldwide, the e-tailer said.
See the full story at CNBC.
Breaking Up Is Hard To Do
Amazon may have become too big for its britches, and the resulting animus it receives from President Trump could lead to an antitrust suit by the FTC. That’s the thinking of Citi Research analyst Mark May, who believes chairman Jeff Bezos should head off federal regulators at the pass by separating its retail and Cloud-computing businesses.
May would price the retail spinoff at $400 billion, making Amazon Web Services (AWS) the more valuable piece of Bezos’ $1 trillion pie. "A smaller market-cap Amazon retail business may bring (slightly) less attention to its market size and dominance," he wrote in a research note.
See the full story at CNBC.
What’s Cooking At Amazon?
Plenty, based on the torrent of new private-label products and smart-home skills the company spewed out last week. While most are technological marvels, two devices in particular stand out for their disruptive potential in the marketplace.
One is a voice-operated, Alexa-enabled microwave oven, representing the e-tailer’s first kitchen appliance under its own badge and conceivably the foundation for more majaps to come. The other is more insidious: a no muss-no fuss module for manufacturers that effortlessly integrates Alexa into their products.
See the full story at TWICE.
Amazon Quote Of The Week
"There has been greater noise of late regarding the desire to investigate and potentially regulate the company." — Citi Research analyst Mark May, on why Amazon should split its retail and Cloud-computing businesses