Amazon Lays Out Strategy for Whole Foods, Expects to Finalize Merger on Monday
SEATLLE, WA & AUSTIN, TX – After clearing the final regulatory hurdles this week, Amazon and Whole Foods Market announced, in a joint statement, that the companies expect to close Amazon’s pending acquisition of Whole Foods by Monday August 28, 2017. The two companies noted that they will pursue the vision of making Whole Foods Market’s high-quality, natural, and organic food affordable for everyone and announced that Whole Foods will offer lower prices on a selection of the supermarket’s best-selling grocery staples starting Monday.
“We’re determined to make healthy and organic food affordable for everyone. Everybody should be able to eat Whole Foods Market quality—we will lower prices without compromising Whole Foods Market’s long-held commitment to the highest standards,” said Jeff Wilke, CEO of Amazon Worldwide Consumer. “To get started, we’re going to lower prices beginning Monday on a selection of best-selling grocery staples, including Whole Trade organic bananas, responsibly-farmed salmon, organic large brown eggs, animal-welfare-rated 85 percent lean ground beef, and more.”
Wilke noted that more discounts are expected to follow suit as the two companies’ continue to integrate.
“And this is just the beginning–we will make Amazon Prime the customer rewards program at Whole Foods Market and continuously lower prices as we invent together," Wilke added. "There is significant work and opportunity ahead, and we’re thrilled to get started.”
The two companies also announced that, starting Monday, Whole Foods stores will begin work on the following changes and initiatives:
- Starting Monday, Whole Foods customers will enjoy lower prices on products such as bananas, organic avocados, organic large brown eggs, organic responsibly-farmed salmon and tilapia, organic baby kale and baby lettuce, animal-welfare-rated 85% lean ground beef, almond butter, organic Gala and Fuji apples, organic rotisserie chicken, 365 Everyday Value organic butter, and more
- After certain technical integration work is complete, Amazon Prime will become Whole Foods Market’s customer rewards program, providing Prime members with special savings and in-store benefits
- Whole Foods Market’s healthy and high-quality private label products—including 365 Everyday Value, Whole Foods Market, Whole Paws, and Whole Catch—will be available through Amazon.com, AmazonFresh, Prime Pantry, and Prime Now
- Amazon Lockers will be available in select Whole Foods Market stores, where customers can pick up products shipped from Amazon.com and send returns back to Amazon during a trip to the store
Additionally, the companies promised more in-store benefits and lower prices for customers over time as the two companies integrate logistics, point-of-sale, and merchandising systems.
“It’s been our mission for 39 years at Whole Foods Market to bring the highest quality food to our customers,” said John Mackey, Whole Foods Market Co-Founder and CEO. “By working together with Amazon and integrating in several key areas, we can lower prices and double down on that mission and reach more people with Whole Foods Market’s high-quality, natural, and organic food. As part of our commitment to quality, we’ll continue to expand our efforts to support and promote local products and suppliers. We can’t wait to start showing customers what’s possible when Whole Foods Market and Amazon innovate together.”
The two companies noted that Whole Foods will continue to grow its team and create jobs in local communities, as it opens new stores, hires new team members, and expands its support of local farmers and artisans. Whole Foods will reportedly maintain operations under its own brand, preserve its high standards and commitment to providing the finest natural and organic foods, and continue to source from trusted vendors and partners around the world. John Mackey will remain as CEO, and Whole Foods Market’s headquarters will stay in Austin, Texas.
News of the final timeframe for the acquisition and subsequent discount pricing initiatives sent rival retailers’ stocks reeling, with CNBC reporting that subsequent stock declines from six major grocery retailers erased nearly $12 billion in market value in a matter of hours.
AndNowUKnow will continue to report with updates as they occur.