Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Amazon bought Whole Foods but not for why most people think...

Very interesting.... 

A lot to think about here.


To understand the move it’s important to first understand what Amazon is, and perhaps more importantly, what it is not: Amazon is not a retailer. It’s natural to think of it as a retailer but in truth, Amazon is a data, technology and innovation company that happens to sell things. Secondly, Amazon doesn’t regard its business as a series of product verticals but rather as a horizontal continuum of value.

Consider the comment that Jeff Bezos once made, after Amazon won a Golden Globe award for original video content. He said: "When we win a Golden Globe, it helps us sell more shoes." In other words, Bezos and team don’t think of any particular category of product or service as a means unto itself but rather as merely one small part of an intricately connected ecosystem of content, convenience and value, where success in each category sustains, supports and strengthens the others. The end game for Amazon is to sell everything, to everyone, everywhere.

So, how does the Whole Foods acquisition factor into that end objective? There are a few major factors to consider... (More at source.)
  • Frequency
  • Data
  • Shared Customers
  • Last Mile Strategy
  • Replenishment Technology


The century-long interplay between technology and retail suggests Walmart is screwed. Its efforts to morph into an online retailer by buying Bonobos and will end up making the company seem like Michael Jordan playing baseball—what made it great at one thing doesn’t translate to another.

Long before Amazon, tech shaped retail, and that history gives us a hint of what’s to come. Start back at the founding of Sears, in 1893. For its initial 30 years, Sears was solely a mail-order company, relying on the U.S. Postal Service and railroads for delivery. But the automobile was emerging as a new technology that would change society and alter the way people shop. There was now a relatively easy way to go to a store many miles away and bring items home. Sears’s big innovation was to build big stores that catered to customers arriving in cars. It opened its first store in Chicago in 1925 and built stores across the country as the economy boomed in the two decades after World War II, luring shoppers who would drive in from newly built suburbs. By exploiting the tech of automobiles, Sears reigned as the nation’s largest retailer into the 1980s.

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