The growth of online retail behemoth Amazon has been phenomenal and doesn’t show signs of slowing, as it focuses its efforts on untapped potential in the grocery market. Reports from the Wall Street Journal suggest it has signed a number of leases for large retail spaces around several major US cities including Philadelphia, Los Angeles, and Chicago.
Not content with branching out into TV streaming, Artificial Intelligence, and household electronics, Amazon’s foray into the grocery sector has included the purchase of Whole Foods stores, the launch of its Prime Now grocery delivery service, and the cashier-less convenience store chain, Amazon Go. Anyone looking to buy Amazon shares might be thinking now could be a good time to do so with such significant expansion afoot.
Amazon Growth in Recent Years
Amazon has grown to become the world’s third-largest public company and the world’s biggest online company by revenue. Amazon is now known as one of the ‘big four’ tech companies, alongside Google, Facebook, and Apple. It ended its last fiscal year with revenues up by over 30%, and net income increased by a staggering 232%. According to e-commerce sales specialists, Edge, Amazon’s grocery sales grew by 45% in 2018, and 60% in 2016-17. Its share price is currently hovering around the 1,705.51 marks.
Originally an online book retailer, Amazon was launched in 1994 by ex-Wall Street executive Jeff Bazos, an electrical engineering & computer science graduate. Bezos was looking to capitalize on the burgeoning.com bubble and opted to sell books, as they were fairly low cost and in high demand across the globe. Following the successful launch of Amazon’s online book store, Bezos went on to develop Amazon’s exclusive Kindle range of e-readers, which launched in 2007. After this, Amazon moved into the realms of self-publishing, enabling people to publish and sell their own work via the site. By 2017, Amazon held 83% of the market for US e-book sales.
New Business Model to Expand Grocery shops in the US
Amazon’s business is now globally renowned as a major disruptor brand that challenges market norms in a range of retail sectors to ensure consumers receive innovative services that meet their needs more fully. It’s a new business model of physical retail stores as opposed to purely online sales that began in 2017 with the purchase of Whole Foods. At that time, it had 468 stores, and now has 504.
Amazon has also opened its 4 Star stores, with the most recent opening in Massachusetts. The stores sell a wide range of products rated at least 4 stars by Amazon shoppers, from electrical goods to books, games, and toys. Amazon looks set to continue its expansion by opening more stores, as reports suggest it is considering retail real estate in Connecticut, New York, and New Jersey. It seems Amazon’s brand growth knows no bounds, as it also looks to expand in other markets including aviation and warehouse robotics as well as smart home technology.
The Amazon brand is strong, well recognized and trusted by consumers. According to research by The Verge last year, it is the most trusted of all the technology brands. This is perhaps due to its relentless pursuit to find ways of making life easier for its customers. With such ambitious expansion into new areas, backed by a strong and trusted brand, Amazon’s growth looks set to continue unabated.