Amazon to Acquire American Supermarket Chain Whole Foods Market for US$ 13.7 Billion

Talk about fewer more reasons to leave your home to shop. Online retail behemoth Amazon today announced a blockbuster deal to acquire Whole Foods Market Inc., a popular-if-pricey American supermarket chain, for US$ 13.7 billion in what's the biggest ever acquisition made by the company so far. The surprise-but-inevitable move, potentially fraught with antitrust concerns, is a clear, ruthless indication of its intention to expand to grocery business (as evidenced by AmazonFresh and Amazon Go), while simultaneously giving it access to hundreds of physical storefronts.

Amazon really wants to be the A-Z of shopping

The essentially-for-free deal has predictably sent "shockwaves" across the food industry, wiping off billions from most grocery stocks like Walmart, Target, Costco and Kroger and sending them on a downward spiral. For a company that has long loathed physical retail, it's a little reminiscent of how Amazon first disrupted brick-and-mortar bookstores by popularising the electronic book format, only to later open its own branded physical bookstores. It's also all about making Prime as invaluable a membership as it can get, and as TechCrunch rightly puts, about outflanking rival Walmart which acquired last year and today announced its acquisition of mens fashion chain Bonobos for US$ 310 million.