Amazon is moving to its next location... five, in fact. According to leaked documents, the online retailer is expanding at a rapid rate, setting up shop in multiple countries in the next few months.
According to the leaked documents, Amazon plans to launch in five countries, including counties across Africa, South America and Europe – namely Belgium, Chile, Colombia, Nigeria and South Africa.
Amazon will unveil its marketplace in September, dubbed ‘Project Red Devil’, the documents explain. But this isn’t a huge surprise for shoppers in Belgium. In February, Amazon announced it would be opening its first delivery centre in Antwerp, with the launch date set for the end of the year. It all aligned perfectly.
“Since Amazon has started in Belgium it has built a trusting relationship with different couriers in the country and will continue to work together closely with these partners,” said Robert Viegers, Director of Amazon Logistics Europe.
Belgium will also get Amazon Prime, the report said. “Belgian shoppers, who are already able to sign up for prime through some of Amazon’s other European sites, will get their own dedicated Prime service for a more consistent pricing and shopping experience,” the leaked documents read. Other countries will enter the Prime market shortly after its launch. Moreover, all countries will receive access to Fulfilment by Amazon shortly after launch.
Across the rest of the world, Amazon plans to launch in South Africa and Nigeria. Both of these launches are dubbed under ‘Project Fela’, and plan to launch in February and April 2023, respectively.
This news will be a major threat to the leading online marketplace in Nigeria, Jumia and Konga. At the time of the launch leak, the former’s share prices shed almost ten percent.
Colombia’s launch is dubbed ‘Project Salsa’, which will share the same name as Chile’s launch. Both are expected to launch in February and April 2023. Similar to Nigeria’s Junia, an Argentina-based online marketplace, MercadoLibre’s shares dropped more than seven percent as the Amazon launch was leaked.
It’s been a struggle for Amazon in a post-COVID landscape, reporting a six percent fall in international revenue, resulting in a USD1.3B loss in Q1. Its operating cash flow dropped 41 percent to USD39.3B, compared to USD67.2B the 12 months prior. Its net sales increased scene percent to USD116.4B. But launching in these new countries may prove to be a great step towards recovery.
“The pandemic and subsequent war in Ukraine have brought unusual growth and challenges,” shared Andy Jasse, CEO of Amazon. “Today, as we’re no longer chasing physical or staffing capacity, our teams are squarely focused on improving productivity and cost efficiencies throughout our fulfilment network. We know how to do this and have done it before. This may take some time, particularly as we work through ongoing inflationary and supply chain pressures, but we see encouraging progress on a number of customer experience dimensions, including delivery speed performance as we’re now approaching levels not seen since the months immediately preceding the pandemic in early 2020.”
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