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Amazon looking to open a new nationwide grocery chain

(AP)

In news that’s likely not thrilling to the rest of the grocery industry, Amazon is trading boxes for paper bags, and looking to open a dozens of grocery stores across the U.S.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles is set to host the first location before the end of the year. Leases on two additional locations have been signed and there are plans for Amazon grocery stores in San Francisco, Seattle, Chicago, Washington, D.C., and Philadelphia.

It’s not clear as of yet what these stores will look like, but they will exist separately from the company’s upscale Whole Foods Market chain. Amazon is reportedly looking to grab a larger sector of the market by opening more conventional stores with a wider selection of groceries than what’s currently available at their Whole Foods.

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Such changes might include lower prices and items which don’t necessarily conform to Whole Foods’ policy of not selling products without artificial flavors, colors, preservatives and sweeteners, among other standards.

The proposed spaces are likely to be slightly smaller than the average grocery store, with 35,000 square feet instead of 60,000 square feet. Part of the plan may be purchasing small, local grocery chains as well.

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Amazon has been gradually making inroads into the grocery industry with the acquisition of of Whole Foods, the roll out of cashierless Amazon Go stores in urban areas, and grocery delivery with Amazon Prime Now. It can sometimes be hard to keep track of all their new ventures.

Analysts see the move as further effort to synchronize e-commerce with brick and mortar stores, catering to customers at numerous levels of convenience.

 

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