5 Companies that Amazon is Putting Out of Business
The odds are pretty good that you or someone you know has bought something off of Amazon since the company was founded in 1994. In fact, as of February 2017, Amazon has over 300 million users -- that's almost as many as the entire population of the US -- and nearly 80% of all of its users buy something from the company at least once per month and 20% at least once per week. The company's most recent acquistion, Whole Foods Market (WFM), has made quite the splash and has caught the interest (and potential business) of many Millennials.
Amazon is a tech and retail powerhouse, with no end to how many coals they'll add to their metaphorical empire fire. However, there is a big downside to this: the death of many other well-to-do companies who simply cannot keep up with this infrastructure. Here are the 5 main companies that Amazon is very close to putting out of business...or at the very least, acquiring for themselves:
1. Barnes & Noble - Many forget that Amazon started as an online bookstore in 1995, but today it is the world leader in book sales. The Kindle, which launched in 2007, is now the dominant player in the book market and the e-book market. In 2014, Forbes estimated that Kindle makes up 19.5% of all book sales globally, and according to Morgan Stanley, Amazon has sold $5 billion in Kindle devices. So therefore, it's a tall order for Barnes and Noble to keep up. They've been holding on more so than other book retailers with the development of the Nook, but even that won't likely be enough to save them.
2. Macy's - For many, it doesn't make sense to buy things like clothes and shoes without first trying them on. Unfortunately for Macy's that doesn't mean that they'll take away sales from Amazon. Generally people can try things on, look up the price on Amazon, and get the same product for a fraction of the price. The same goes with bags, jewelry, perfumes, etc. -- if you can find it in a department store as large and strong as Macy's, you can buy it on Amazon for far cheaper.
3. Costco - Memberships are generally how Costco can justify selling its products for far less than retail. Unfortunately, they don't end up on your front door. Amazon has also entered the grocery space, providing items that can be delivered on a regular basis at a fraction of the price of Costco. And the membership to Amazon Prime, with many perks now, is much more attractive than the other's annual membership fees.
4. Etsy - Far more people have heard of Amazon than Etsy, and so many craft vendors find themselves flocking to Amazon. It would be all too easy for Amazon to acquire Etsy to expand a "crafty" division. Of course, people don't want to buy antique vases and homemade sweaters where they buy toothpaste and toilet paper, so it only makes sense to have a separate, but equally owned, business involved in arts and crafts.
5. Blue Apron - Despite rising to popularity in recent years, Blue Apron is nowhere near as efficient in shipping local groceries to individuals in massive regions without creating a ton of extra waste. The company is still in the start-up phase, with only a handful of distributors throughout the country. Amazon has hundreds, and could much easily organize the shipping for local organic products without creating much waste in the process. Plus, the addition of Whole Foods to its corporate portfolio means that Amazon now has access to cheaper organic foods, effectively shutting down Blue Apron who can't compete with those prices.