Amazon to open retail presence in Australia

Amazon to open retail presence in Australia

Amazon has revealed it will launch a retail arm in Australia after years of speculation.

The global e-commerce giant opened an arm of Amazon Web Services in Australia 2012, a Kindle store on amazon.com.au in 2013 and said in a statement on Thursday (20th April) “the next step is to bring a retail offering to Australia, and we are making those plans now."

The retailer currently employs 1,000 people in the country.  Speculation about when rather than if the online retailer would open a retail arm in Australia has been mounting for years. While neither a date nor a location for a warehouse have been revealed, Business Insider said it understands that Amazon’s retail offer could come online “sooner” than when many have predicted in September in time for the Christmas market.

In terms of location, a decision has not yet been made but it will either build a 93,000 sq m fulfilment centre in Sydney, Brisbane or Melbourne, reported the Sydney Morning Herald.

Amazon now accounts for $1bn of Australia’s $300bn annual retail sales, according to Morgan Stanley. The analysts have called the company the “country killer”, warning retail clients through The Australian: “While Amazon might take time to build up momentum in this country, it hangs like the sword of Damocles over corporate Australia.”

An Amazon spokesperson added: “We are excited to bring thousands of new jobs to Australia, millions of dollars in additional investment, and to empower small Australian businesses through Amazon Marketplace.”