By Ronnie Moas,
I am very upset about the news this morning regarding Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) taking over Whole Foods (NASDAQ:WFM). It is mind-boggling to me that the government is allowing Amazon to just destroy everything in its path — record stores, book stores, furniture stores, clothing stores, electronics stores, and now grocery chains. It almost feels as though they have people in the government that were paid off to turn their backs on what is going on here. This company dodges taxes in many countries that they operate in, they destroy the competition, and mistreat suppliers and service providers.
They will soon get to the point where their market cap is a trillion dollars and most of that money ends up in the pockets of a few millionaires and billionaires. They will eventually replace their employees with robots in an effort to enrich those same millionaires and billionaires. It really is a sickening story. Amazon is the poster child for vulture capitalism. I don’t understand why people support this company and it infuriates people who have a problem with the gap between rich and poor as much as any other story in our society. Someone needs to speak up about this. If I was a marketing person I would probably do a David versus Goliath battle against them and try to get some kind of grassroots boycott going against this company. I boycotted them a few years ago actually (on a personal level).
I am now looking at Kroger Co (NYSE:KR) very carefully — it has dropped 33% in the last 24 hours. It is now trading at 10X earnings. If I’m not mistaken, there are only 15% of Whole Foods stores that overlap with Kroger, so there may be an opportunity here for a dead cat bounce of 15%. I am not quite ready to step in on this one. I don’t think the market has yet processed how much damage the Amazon and Whole Foods combination could do. It is a real game changer. There were rumors that this was going to happen a couple of months back and Whole Foods jumped up to $38 at the time but then there was no news about this for a couple of months and Whole Foods stock actually started to roll-over late last week and up until yesterday.
Supermarkets are a very rough business with razor-thin profit margins and this will push many stores from the black and into the red (loss). This is a nauseating story as far as I’m concerned and I really hope that there is some kind of public outrage about this. I did more than a dozen interviews back in 2014 after putting out a 44 page report blacklisting companies like Apple, Amazon, Walmart, Nike and Philip Morris on ethical and moral grounds. It got quite a bit of attention, but the bottom line is that people will go where they have the most convenience and the lowest cost and they don’t really care about what the implications and the consequences are.