Amazon Inc Continues to Expand, Buys Whole Foods Market

The $13.7 billion deal lifted shares for both companies, punished the stocks of grocery companies who now have even more reason to fear Amazon's moves onto their turf, and added a cool $2 billion to Jeff Bezos' net worth.

The stock prices of large food retail chains, such as Costco, tumbled a bit. The shift started within minutes of the announcement online retailer Amazon would taking over the grocery chain Whole Foods.

The company also opened a brick-and-mortar bookstore earlier this week in New Jersey.

Nonetheless, a lot is about to change. According to the analyst, the grocery industry remains one of the "largest and most under-penetrated markets" for the e-commerce giant.

The companies expect the deal to close by the end of 2017, subject to approval by Whole Foods Market's shareholders and regulators. I think ultimately, this is good for consumers. Increasingly, we'll be doing everything from home. "They want prepared foods, they want ready-to-eat foods, something I can heat and eat", Johnson said.

The growth of online grocery shopping has faced barriers. But there have been challenges.

"That sort of thing has gone on for a while", Dineen said at The Alameda Whole Foods in San Jose.

TARRANT: As an industry, I mean they're 10 years behind at least. Has that been a problem for Amazon?

Scroggins anticipated the move as Amazon looked for ways to gobble up fresh food sales. And figuring out how to get it to your front door is the ultimate inconvenience for consumers.

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The deal represents another example of Amazon moving away from its online roots and pushing into the physical retail world.

Amazon says in a statement that it has "no plans to use the technology developed for Amazon Go to automate the jobs of cashiers at Whole Foods". Kroger, which had been rumored late previous year to be considering a takeover of Whole Foods, was down 14 percent.

Yes. That's an extraordinary penetration for a supermarket chain with just 431 stores.

Whole Foods now has 430 stories, but after the acquisition, they will have 350 million stores because they will be on every desktop, Feinberg says.

So what if you could get Whole Foods products or other groceries delivered to your door? Will we just be stopping by to pick up what we ordered online?

Today, though, you might be forgiven for thinking he's changed his mind. The stores will evolve to become more experiential.

"I think that this takes all of the pressure off Whole Foods and gives Whole Foods the opportunity to revitalise that business and, of course, it stems the criticism from all of these activist investors", said Neil Saunders, managing director of GlobalData Retail in NY.

Kyle Bunch is with R/GA, a marketing, advertising and consulting firm right across from the Whole Foods headquarters. "We'd like to see what we're buying", he said.

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