Amazon Said to Consider Opening Up to 3,000 Cashierless Stores by 2021
20 September, 2018, 20:54 | Author: Brooke Harris
The e-commerce giant may open as many as 3,000 such stores by 2021, according to the report. Amazon rival Walmart operates 5,300 locations, and Kroger, the largest USA grocer by sales, runs 3,900 stores.
Amazon Go threatens traditional convenience store companies like 7-Eleven, as well as chain fast food sandwich and lunch chains like Subway. "Given Amazon's need to invest in in-store automation technologies, cameras and sensors, we would not be surprised to see the cost toward the higher end of this range", they added.
Amazon opened its first cashierless store in Seattle two years ago (pictured) and has launched two additional locations in Seattle and another in Chicago. The stores could also help Amazon become a bigger player in the pharmacy business because it agreed to buy PillPack, an online drugstore, in June. The convenience store concept, which works with its own app, allows customers to shop without having to wait in checkout lines.
Shares of US supermarket chains Kroger Co (KR.N) and Target Corp (TGT.N) fell between 1 and 2 percent following the news.
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The first AmazonGo store in downtown Seattle-which opened to the public back in January-reportedly cost over $1 million in hardware alone, says an unnamed source speaking with Bloomberg. It would also give Amazon a much expanded footprint of physical stores in the U.S., adding to its more than 350 Whole Foods stores.
"We have no plans to open 2,000 of anything", a spokesperson said a few days after the newspaper's story published.
Going from just four locations to 3,000 in a few years would constitute a massive jump and make Amazon a leading convenience store operator, rivaling 7-Eleven, Walgreens and CVS. "Over time, Amazon's ability to use all of these datasets should lead to a more customer-focused brick and mortar shopping experience and a higher share of wallet flowing toward Amazon". A fourth AmazonGo opened Monday in Chicago and there are plans to open a fifth in New York City. After opening its first location in 2016, Amazon is now up to 16 locations.
Amazon Go is the most distinctive of all of its physical stores.
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