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Amazon: Bringing down the Oldest Brands

Amazon is a juggernaut when it comes to dominating the market. It is a global leader in virtually everything. With over 300 million active users, Amazon is valued on the market at nearly $500 billion, and founder Jeff Bezos, with 17% stake in Amazon Inc., is currently the second richest man on the planet, merely $4 billion shy of Bill Gates. The now e-commerce giant was founded by Jeff Bezos on July 5, 1994, in Seattle, Washington and currently employs more than 340,000 employees.

The company motto is to “Work hard, have fun, make history” and the company is certainly making histories. Starting as an online bookstore, it has now diversified to the sale of DVDs, CDs, Blu-rays, software, video games, audiobooks, electronics, apparels, furniture, food, toys, and jewelry. Starting from $1.73 a share on 16th May 1997, one company share as of today is valued at $1,003.74. It has become the largest provider of cloud infrastructure services and is the fourth most valuable public company.

Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods Market Inc. and partnership with Nike Inc. is a direct challenge to other stores like Walmart.

Barnes and Noble Inc. became one of the first preys to Amazon’s dominance. Starting as a bookstore called John Barnes and Company in 1886, Barnes and Noble became a Fortune 500 company with the most number of retail outlets in the USA and has its headquarters in New York City. While the name Barnes and Noble is still reputed, Amazon has now become the largest retailer of book sales. Amazon’s Kindle makes up for 19.5% of all book sales globally and Amazon has sold $5 billion in Kindle devices. Barnes and Noble is hanging in there with its shares selling at $7.55 a share.

Macy’s is the sister company of Bloomingdales’. It was said earlier ‘If you haven’t seen Macy’s, you haven’t seen New York’ but now the store is struggling to stay alive owing to Amazon’s growth in the apparel market. With its Amazon Wardrobe, a service which allowed customers to try their clothes before buying, Amazon is analyzed to own 7 percent of the apparel market, a figure which could reach up to 19% till 2020. Macy’s saw a drop of 39% in its sales and 17% in its stocks, irrecoverable, making a 7-year low in June. Warren Buffet said at Berkshire’s annual meeting that all department stores are online now.

Amazon launched its brand Handmade in 2015 and that has caused a job-cutting spree and layoffs by Etsy Inc. Some of the Etsy sellers have straight out refused to list their products on Amazon claiming that Amazon was copying their products and selling them at a lower price. Etsy’s profits have been stagnating for long now and even after the company went public in 2015, shares rose above $30 a share but the stagnating profits brought the prices of its shares back to a price of $16 a share.

The Recent acquisition of Whole Foods Market Inc. by Amazon has every departmental store in a knot owing to the fact that Amazon has the financial capacity of lowering the prices of goods in the market. The deal also got Amazon access to Whole Foods’s own organic 365 Brand, allowing customers to shop for their organic foods needs online.

These examples are just a few of all businesses that Amazon has put an end to. People no longer have to go out and shop when everything could be ordered online and delivered at their doorstep.

 

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