Amazon Moving Forward With Grocery Chain

On the latest episode of the E-Commerce Retail Briefing podcast:

Amazon is reportedly moving forward with plans for its own U.S. grocery chain. The retail giant has been signing dozens of leases in the Los Angeles area and also has plans to open early outposts in Chicago and Philadelphia.

  • Tilly’s is adding 25-year Nordstrom veteran, Tricia Smith, on as executive VP and chief merchandising officer. In her new role at Tilly’s, she will oversee all aspects of the company’s merchandising operations, including buying and sourcing, and product development. Tilly’s CEO, Ed Thomas, said he was excited to have someone of Tricia’s extensive experience joining the company and that her track record of growth and leadership will bring great value to the company as they improve.
  • The subscription box service is a competitive space, with well-known names like HelloFresh, Blue Apron, and BirchBox all gunning for market share. However, a new survey from Clutch reveals one may have risen to the top of the pack. Out of the 528 shoppers surveyed, a leading 29% are members of Dollar Shave Club. Cosmetics service, Ipsy, followed behind with 21% surveyed being members.
  • Popular resale site, Poshmark, has paid out more than $2 billion to its sellers this year, doubling the $1 billion milestone they hit just last year. The company now boasts more than 50 million users nationwide, including 7 million sellers in their community. The milestone is a reflection of the massive growth the secondhand market is seeing. The resale industry is expected to double in the next five years to hit $51 million.

Amazon Signs Leases In Los Angeles For Grocery Chain

Earlier this year, Amazon was reportedly considering its own grocery chain. The retail giant had already entered the space by acquiring Whole Foods, but is now seemingly moving forward with its plans to open a separate chain of U.S. grocery stores. The Wall Street Journal reported that Amazon had signed more than a dozen leases in the Los Angeles area for that purpose. Amazon is also likely to plan early outposts in Chicago and Philadelphia. According to sources, these stores could open as early as the end of the year. 

The move comes as Amazon is focusing its efforts on brick-and-mortar to reach more consumers. The company now has 16 Amazon Go stores, where customers can grab ready-to-eat food and make grocery purchases with checkout-free technology. The retail giant also has four Amazon four-star stores and 18 Amazon Bookstores. Amazon’s revenue from brick-and-mortar locations is small, but showing signs of growth. In the second quarter, Amazon saw its physical store sales rise 1 percent to $4.3 billion from the previous year. While Amazon’s full scope of grocery store plans hasn’t been revealed yet, it’s evident they’re gearing up for something big.