The Federal Trade Commission and 17 state attorneys general filed a long-expected antitrust lawsuit against Amazon, with the FTC accusing the company of monopolistic behavior on a broad scale and suggesting a breakup as one form of injunctive relief. The company used its market power to block competition, inflate prices and degrade product quality, the FTC alleges.
Amazon Prime Day 2, this time dubbed Big Deal Days, is now set for Oct. 10-11, the company announced, with the fall version now appearing to be a locked-in flash sale event catering to bargain-seeking shoppers who seemingly can’t get enough during the July extravaganza. Target and Walmart, not wanting to be left out, have competing events that coincide or run ahead of Amazon.
At its Accelerate seller conference in Seattle, Amazon announced a raft of interconnected services Tuesday, branded as Supply Chain by Amazon. It handles everything from logistics and forwarding from point of origin all the way to the customer’s door. For the first time, Amazon offers bulk storage, distribution and replenishment across channels from the same inventory pool, including retail stores.
FedEx Express package and freight standard list rates for U.S., U.S. export and U.S. import services, and FedEx Ground standard list rates will increase an average of 5.9% as of Jan. 1. The Sept. 7 release of the General Rate Increase marks the earliest announcement in company history. While it’s impossible to analyze every 2024 change, here are some important takeaways for shippers to note and assess.
Flexport is undergoing another reshuffle at the top, with former Amazon logistics executive Dave Clark departing, replaced at least for now by once-again CEO and founder Ryan Peterson in a shakeup pointing to a reset to the company’s core freight focus and a pullback from its aggressive growth plans. But experts wonder how Flexport will fare as freight volumes and rates fall in tandem globally.
Amazon aggregators, companies using massive capital to acquire and roll up top sellers to gain economies of scale, continue to fall on hard times as market forces have squeezed the model and forced them to shift their focus from an arms race to a profitable growth trajectory. They now look to grow existing brands and launch new products, only sparingly doing new acquisitions, an expert says.
In an unusual move, Amazon and Shopify have formed a partnership that lets Shopify merchants integrate Buy With Prime at checkout through an Amazon app in Shopify’s store, with the latter quick to note that merchants still control their brand and customer data within its administrative dashboard. The app will be available to all U.S. merchants in September.
Amazon is testing pricing for non-Prime members to get free shipping in selected areas, raising the threshold from $25 back to $35 – the same as for shoppers who aren’t members of Walmart+ – as it probes the potential to increase order value when shoppers add items. Amazon has yo-yoed the order threshold as it reads the tea leaves of analytical data on shopper behavior and pulls the levers.
As expected, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters voted overwhelmingly to ratify a new five-year contract with UPS, giving the 340,000 members at the carrier higher wages for part- and full-time workers, and eliminating a hated two-tier system of driver classification. More than 86% of union members voting said yes to the new contract, the Teamsters said, a record for a UPS deal.
Amazon will start charging a 2% per-item fee to merchants using Seller Fulfilled Prime (SFP) starting in October, Bloomberg reports, while the company is offering influencers the equivalent of $25 a video to populate content promoting its listings as it seeks a bulwark against Chinese social giant TikTok.