Bizarre Story of How Amazon and Whole Foods Deal Came to Be

Posted June 26, 2017

He didn't use that phrase per se when describing the deal to employees at a town hall on Friday, but he might as well have: If you read the transcript of his remarks, which Whole Foods included yesterday in a new SEC filing, his praise of Amazon sounds more like a man toasting his fiancée at their engagement party. "Because - little over six weeks after we met on this blind date, we're - we're f - officially engaged", he said.

The deal is being called a "game changer", as Amazon takes over Whole Foods, for almost $14 billion dollars.

Amazon has a big fix up to do quickly on Whole Foods and integrate it into its systems - a big ask for a company that doesn't know how to sell to the public except on the basis of online offers and technology - that won't work in a physical store.

"One of the things they do better than us, they are more customer-centric than we are", Mackey said of Amazon in the town hall meeting. "They will push pretty heavily to integrate Whole Foods with Amazon, I'm sure there'll be Prime rewards for shopping at Whole Foods", Barnett says". "They're not playin" a bunch of BS games", Mackey said. We're gonna - we're gonna - we're gonna import their passion about that.

It may not be evident on the surface but Amazon's buyout of Whole Foods could mark the Seattle company's next big step in automating how we buy things.

Analysts say there's no reason to think Amazon's deal with Whole Foods will be limited to groceries. Amazon, which made a splash previous year with a checkout-free grocery store, has denied reports that it plans to automate the jobs of Whole Foods cashiers.

Yesterday saw muted headlines in Australia about Amazon's $US13.7 billion (around $A18 billion) bid for Whole Foods.

How will Amazon transform Whole Foods? Amazon has, however, rolled out a futuristic store concept with no cashiers or checkout lines.

Leonard noted his chain is known for free samples and costumed farm animals that walk around stores and greet shoppers. But he did hint that making the customer top of mind could require a decreased emphasis on how well it treats employees, who are referred to as "team members".

"Different corporation taking over can hurt, it can help, we'll see", says s Ishmael McIntosh.

Amazon are coming to Australia in the second half of 2017, and it's time for those with a giant share of the consumer market to innovate or fall, as the introduction of Amazon will mean that the Australian market will become survival of the fittest. Amazon has "promised everyone will get an Echo the day of the merger", he said.

Culpepper, who owns Kroger Co shares, said Kroger is the company that would be most likely improve Whole Foods' efficiency, but that it would have difficulty matching Amazon's cash offer.

Last month CNBC reported that Amazon was in serious discussions about breaking into the prescription drug business, and the move to acquire Whole Foods may be a strategic one, suggest some experts.