The False Tale of Amazon's Industry-Conquering Juggernaut | RetailTechPodcast

The False Tale of Amazon's Industry-Conquering Juggernaut

There's no industry that Amazon feels incapable of taking on - not even the Google and Facebook fief of advertising, where Amazon is already bringing in some $2 billion in revenues every quarter. It's a testament to the cultural salience of the publishing industry that the books precedent looms so large in the mind of the public and stock traders, because today, 24 years after Amazon was founded, the company has failed to achieve similar market power in any other sector. As Amazon has become one of the most valuable companies in the world, it has taken increasing pains to avoid doing anything that antitrust authorities might disapprove of. Amazon's book monopsony is valuable, but it also comes at significant reputational cost; it's not at all clear that building a similar monopsony in some other market would be a net positive for the company. Still, there's a world of difference between Amazon starting to sell ads, and Amazon being a potentially disruptive force to the advertising duopoly of Google and Facebook. Amazon famously reinvests almost all of its profits into its own business, which is one of the reasons Wall Street loves the company so much. Even Amazon's core business of retailing hasn't changed all that much: e-commerce still accounts for less than 10 percent of total sales, and Amazon is a minority of that 10 percent. Read more