Amazon to buy Whole Foods Market for $13.7 bn

Amazon is buying Whole Foods in a deal valued at about $13.7 billion, a stunning move into brick-and-mortar retail that sets the stage for more radical store experimentation and intensified competition with grocery rivals.

The acquisition will be watched with some interest and trepidation across supermarkets operating in the United Kingdom, but particular by Waitrose, with whom Whole Foods competes most closely, and Morrisons, which has a deal to supply food to Amazon customers in the UK.

The Whole Foods acquisition was masterminded by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos. "They're doing an wonderful job and we want that to continue".

Whole Foods' co-founder and chief executive officer John Mackey will continue to run the chain with the headquarters of the company to remain in Austin, Texas, the companies said.

Whole Foods Market will continue to operate stores under the Whole Foods Market brand and source from trusted vendors and partners around the world. Of course, that is just my speculation on how it could potentially work but we can all agree that Amazon is pushing online grocery shopping.

But Mackey also said, "the operating environment remains challenging", and he promised to enact changes at the company to keep it competitive and profitable.

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It's hard to see why Amazon wouldn't do this eventually, but Whole Foods employees can rest safe for now.

Whole Foods, founded in 1978, describes itself as "America's healthiest grocery store".

- Supervalu. The grocery store operator lost 60 cents, or 16 percent, to $3.16.

The news hurt shares of large diversified retailers as well. The shopper's Amazon account gets automatically charged.

"It's a quick opportunity to become a real player and start doing their favorite thing, which is clicking on Walmart's heels", Wank added.

Amazon is buying Whole Foods, in a merger that values Whole Foods stock at $42 a share - a premium over the price of around $33 at the close of trading on Thursday.

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