Amazon officially confirms Australian retail launch

While there’ve been many hints that Amazon has been toying with the idea of bringing its retail services to Australia for some time, today we’ve finally got official word from the online giant about its intentions for the AU market.

In a written statement, a spokesperson for Amazon has said that after beginning its foray into the Australian marketplace in 2012 with Web Services, and following that in 2013 with a local Kindle store, “the next step is to bring a retail offering to Australia, and we are making those plans now”. 

With an existing workforce of 1,000 employees already working for Amazon Down Under, and employment callouts popping up recently for AmazonFresh — the company’s grocery delivery service — it appears that the retail giant is looking at the long game. “We are excited to bring thousands of new jobs to Australia, millions of dollars in additional investment, and to empower small Australian businesses through Amazon Marketplace,” the statement says.

The future of retail

The statement itself is a brief one and doesn’t delve into too many details — there are no firm dates for when the rollout will take place. However, if other countries are reasonable indicators, then the retail environment in Australia is set to change drastically. Since launching in the UK and Germany, Amazon has overtaken all other local retailers in selling non-food goods.

With a likely initial focus on the non-perishable, easy-to-ship realm of consumer electronics, Amazon poses a significant threat to current leaders in the field, Harvey Norman and JB Hi-Fi. Along with this, Amazon Marketplace will attempt to rival the popularity of eBay and Gumtree as Australia’s go-to for selling off their unwanted exercise bikes and CD collections. 

The company is currently searching for a vacant space for the company’s necessarily-enormous warehouse (dubbed a ‘fulfilment centre’) and locations in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne are being considered. 

[Background image courtesy of Flickr user Mugley]