I remember the day Amazon came public. It was a stupid little stock, swinging around violently. It was a book retailer, nothing more. At the time, I was pitching Barnes and Noble’s bookstores for new accounts, based off the premise the Microsoft’s partnership with them would devastate Amazon’s entry into the space. Back then, Microsoft was the big kahuna that everyone looked up to. Now they’re yesterday’s news.
What Bezos has done with Amazon is nothing short of spectacular. We all benefit from it — in spite of the fact that it’s laying waste to our beloved shopping malls (thank you for killing the mall, truly).
Having said that, Bezos has more work to do, bigger industries to destroy — like the food sector. With the acquisition of Whole Foods, expect to see your local grocery store shut down inside 5 years — leaving a nice vacant lot in your strip mall for the rats and vermin to traverse.
But what else has escaped the wrath of this borg, the Amazon collective?
Here is a list of retailers that have flourished over the past two years.
STMP +108% — a play off the demise of the US postal service, an online venture. They don’t really compete with Amazon, but what if Amazon decided to compete with them?
W +98% — an annoying online retailer, more akin to OSTK if anything else. Their sales people call you up and pitch you to buy couches. It’s fucking absurd.
DPZ +92% — This might sound crazy, but what if Amazon decided to get into the prepared food delivery business via Whole Foods? They make damned good pizza. That being said, DPZ looks safe, for now.
ULTA +79% — this is like a Disney for women looking for cosmetics. For the life of me, I don’t know why Amazon doesn’t crush them already. The overbearing stench of cheap perfume and lotion in these places make my eyes burn and my stomach turn. This is definitely an Amazon target, at some point.
BBY +79% — This company was in danger 5 years ago, but has since turned it all around. It is one of the few stores that has flourished under the Amazon reign, most likely attributed to the fact that people like to see their refrigerators before buying them and also because BBY has great customer service.
BURL +70% — Discounted wares for the masses. Amazon will have a hard time competing with places like this.
NFLX +65% — Amazon competes with Netflix via Amazon Prime. But it doesn’t matter. People want more than 1 online teevee channel, just like they want more than 1 cable movie channel. There’s plenty of room for everyone to grow in this space.
PCLN +65% — I can see Bezos getting into this space at some point. Perhaps he’ll buy TRIP and stick a dagger into the face of PCLN? God, I hope so.
CHGG +62% — Online books for college kids, at a discount. How is Amazon not crushing them already?
EBAY +46% — Amazon has done a poor job at cultivating their collectibles stores. Ebay is the king at empowering the layman to open up an online store and crush it. A good friend of mine quit his $250k per year job to sell sneakers online and has been making more doing that than at his posh corp gig.
SIRI +39% — Amazon should buy SIRI and merge it with Amazon music to annihilate everyone else. No one can compete with Siri in the car.
COST +23% — At some point, the gig will be up at this great retailer. They offer great prices and a wide variety of quality goods. However, it’s only a matter of time before Amazon gets around to offering bulk pricing on food and essentials.
BID +18% — Amazon will never compete with the auction houses. Their businesses aren’t that attractive. Not scalable.
LOW +16% — I already buy many things via Amazon that I’d normally buy at LOW or HD. Do you?
ROST +15% — ROST and TJX are two retailers that sell clothes and other nonsense at bargain prices. This is the one segment of retail that is untouched by Amazon.