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What Did Amazon Do This Week? - June 2nd

WDADTW is the newsletter that even Amazon execs read to keep up with the world of Amazon. Let me know
June 2 · Issue #15 · View online
What Did Amazon Do This Week?
WDADTW is the newsletter that even Amazon execs read to keep up with the world of Amazon. Let me know how you think it can be improved, simply hit reply or email me here.

Amazon's Interest In Boost Mobile A Trojan Horse?
Hot off the presses, the FTC and DOJ have reached an agreement to divvy up antitrust oversight of Google and Amazon, putting Amazon under FTC’s watch and Google under DOJ’s but this is not the biggest news of the week. Despite overwhelmingly voting down not selling it’s facial recognition software to pretty much anyone, the big Amazon news this week is the purchase of ad-tech Sizmek (see below) and the interest in Boost Mobile - a subsidiary/sub-brand from T-Mobile. In a bid to make the $26.5 billion mega-merger of Sprint and T-Mobile look benign to regulators, T-Mobile is offering up Boost and Amazon is interested according to FTC execs. While many scoffed and saw this as folly (and expensive folly), others are saying this could make sense for a more extensive drone play or another service to sell (Amazon already sells phones and, via third-party sellers, prepaid SIM cards) if Amazon acquired rights to some of the wireless spectrum now licensed by the FCC to Sprint or T-Mobile. The move, if successful, could be a warning to Google’s dominance with the Pixel brand (although Analysts seem to think this ship has sailed). Long-term, this could be a move to own more of what Amazon needs to reach consumers. A not entirely terrible move but a costly one (ask Facebook, Microsoft and Google who all own or run infrastructure programs). Amazon isn’t likely to be the only company interested, so this is just getting started. 
  • Amazon owning Boost - and the connections it offers - will be a huge concern for the FTC.
  • If the move goes ahead, other players may be more open to working with brands - think about who chats could be had with now.
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Amazon made $400m (7.7m users) from streaming service in UK mainly due to lack of competition. ··· Amazon needs ‘Good Omens’ to be a hit and is spending hard to make sure people know to watch the show. ··· Amazon has confirmed the rumoured Borussia Dortmund documentary. ··· Jeremy Clarkson will host a farming show for Amazon (yoikes). ··· The Beastie Boys have an Amazon documentary coming out called 'ill Communiction’. ··· Pluto TV is now on Amazon Prime Fire TV channels. ··· The ultra-violent 'Boys’ Amazon title will debut in July. ··· Amazon has taken Sarah Strewicher’s ’The Wilds’ to series. ··· Amazon is developing an action comedy 'La Fresa’ from 'Girlboss’ creator. ··· TWITCH had a troll problem this week. ··· Amazon will release Mindy Kaling essays.
Amazon has bought Sizmek ad serving and dynamic content optimization businesses (not the full company) in a move that will excite duopoly folks. ··· Amazon has denied a large scale order reduction from small producers. ··· Amazon is fuelling one-day shipping with free warehouse space. ··· Thanks to a new £400m deal, schools, unis and councils will be able to buy goods from Amazon. ··· Amazon has partnered with Next for click-and-collect delivery. ··· Amazon opened its fourth Amazon Go store in SF. ··· Amazon launched the following new private labels in the this week: Bakibo (wireless electronics - UK only), Clydek (electronics accessories - UK only), CZON Sports (sporting goods - UK only), FitPro (orthopedic braces - US/UK), SGIbedding (bedding - UK only), Xihama (electronics accessories - UK only) and Xpress First Aid (first aid supplies - UK only). ··· Amazon will be launching ’The Drop’ an influencer/supreme style shopping mechanic. ··· Amazon is offering discounted pricing for selling internationally. ··· Expect Amazon Pay to feature at June announcement events.
Amazon Echo now has five more privacy features (but still not good enough). ··· Amazon has expressed interested in buying Boost Mobile in the US (telco). ··· Amazon’s shareholders voted down not selling facial recognition software  8.3 million to 327 million votes (1 share = 1 vote). ··· Amazon’s ’Textract’ cloud OCR is now available but not perfect yet per reviews. ··· Amazon’s Fire TV cube is now infused with Alexa. ··· Amazon Japan and ’Life’ supermarket are starting to sell fresh foods online in Tokyo. ··· Amazon AWS now works with Apache Kafka (Amazon MSK). ··· Amazon now lets you tell Alexa to delete your Alexa voice recordings (oh, ok…). ··· Amazon launched the Echo Show 5 (another Alexa with a smaller screen) for $90. ··· Alexa announcements feature now work on all Amazon devices and not just Echo ones. ··· Amazon is preparing a wearable device that reads people’s emotions. ··· Amazon opened the kimono this week on its AI research centres in Germany. ··· AWS network of satellite antennae is heading to space and people can use it for as little as $3.
Lots of people are rich now Jeff Bezos is single. ··· Amazon will fall under FTC purview for antitrust issues according to Washington Post (owned by Bezos). ··· MacKensie Bezos has pledged half of her $36 billion to charity. ··· Amazon has lots of jobs going in Georgia. ··· Amazon will give you $25 gift card to scan your measurements into Amazon. ··· Amazon donated $1million the Red Cross for blood donations. ··· Emirates is using AWS to build the bank of the future. ··· Amazon is severing ties with its security firms after Muslim incidents. ··· Amazon came under fire for overbearing ToS for Alexa (people couldn’t sue Amazon). ··· Amazon’s ’S-team’ (elite company decision-makers) has gotten a refresh. ··· Amazon’s Salem warehouse in Oregon will open in August. ··· Amazon sent a woman a private urine sample instead of a shower curtain this week. ··· Amazon is planning a new distribution centre in North Andover. ··· Amazon accidentally sold a Motorola phone before the phone had even been announced.
— Amazon’s booming merch offering is upending licensing deals. [BOF]
— How brands are preparing for Prime Day. [Forbes]
— Walmart has appointed a CTO that is a long time Amazon exec. [Register]
— Amazon’s Summer Trends Report is out. [Real Homes]
— 54% of internet users say they have used Amazon to watch content in the last 12 months (up 17% yoy). [BI]
— Should Amazon be the governments ‘Everything Store’? [FT]
— What exactly is the point of Amazon’s 'Treasure Truck’? [Vox]
— Amazon will grow quicker in 2023 than today. [Seeking Alpha]
– Astronomers aren’t happy with Amazon because of satellite reflections. [NYT]
— Brands are hiring IP Watchdogs to counter Amazon’s gray market. [Digiday]
SHARE PRICE = $1,775.07 ··· CHANGE = -41.25 (-2.27 %) ··· MARKET CAP = $873,923.37 B.
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