Thursday, 19 April, 2018

Amazon kicks off free Whole Foods delivery in four cities

Amazon surprised shoppers with its $13.7 billion acquisition of Whole Foods Amazon surprised shoppers with its $13.7 billion acquisition of Whole Foods
Orlando Vargas | 11 February, 2018, 11:52

Greg Greeley, VP of Amazon Prime and delivery experience, recently told some employees he'll be spending more time at Amazon-owned Whole Foods, focusing on the two companies' integration, CNBC has learned. This delivery system will start working from Thursday and is sure to be of huge help to those Amazon Whole Foods customers in Virginia Beach, Austin, Dallas and Cincinnati for now.

Prime Now is a service that's available exclusively to Prime members, and it's free for them for orders $35 and up.

Whole Foods and Amazon are testing a service that provides two-hour delivery directly from Whole Foods stores.

Amazon is doubling down on the grocery-delivery space.

"We've launched Whole Foods products on our Amazon website, and the technical work continues to make Prime the Whole Foods customer rewards program, and we expect to have more on that later in the year", Olsavsky said.

Amazon shook up the industry with its $13.7bn acquisition of Whole Foods previous year, prompting traditional supermarkets to look for ways to profitably deliver fresh food and shelf-stable pantry items. Prime is available in some 30 major cities, and Amazon will start to chip away at the estimated $1.3 trillion grocery market in the U.S.as its delivery capacity grows, Cowen said.

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Delivery from Whole Foods Market through Prime Now is available daily from 8 a.m.to 10 p.m.

Customers can order most, but not all, items sold at local Whole Foods stores, including fresh produce, meat, seafood, baked goods, and flowers. So Amazon's goal to cut prices at Whole Foods, in addition to this new free delivery option for Prime members, might address these top concerns and drastically improve on the 18% number in 2018.

Existing relationships between Whole Foods and other delivery services, and Prime Now and other grocers, aren't affected by the new delivery offering, Amazon said. As seen with Amazon Go, the marketplace is always looking to streamline the purchasing process.

Andrew Park, senior director of CXsStrategy at InMoment, agrees that this move will not only light a fire under other retailers but drastically impact the future of consumer expectations.

In the six months since Amazon acquired the organic grocer, the e-commerce giant has been mum about its plans for its ballyhooed push into brick-and-mortar food retail.

"One of the biggest things holding back online grocery is the option of free delivery and the speed", Waral said.

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