Online retail giant Amazon has acquired the American shoe retailer Zappos.com in the biggest buy-up deal in the company's history.

Las Vegas-based Zappos.com started off as an online shoe retailer but has since moved into selling other product lines.

Zappos is notorious for its 'unusual' corporate culture, with employees actively encouraged to Twitter and stories of prospective hires being offered $2,000 to turn DOWN a job at Zappos.

Amazon acquired Zappos for 10 million shares of Amazon stock (worth around a cool $900 million right now). Plus, it will also give Zappos' employees an additional $40 million in cash and stock.

Weak at the knees

Jeffrey P. Bezos, Amazon's Chief Exec, said of the deal that he gets all "weak-kneed when I see a customer-obsessed company."

"This morning, our board approved and we signed what's known as a 'definitive agreement,' in which all of the existing shareholders and investors of Zappos (there are over 100) will be exchanging their Zappos stock for Amazon stock," reads a memo from Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh. "Once the exchange is done, Amazon will become the only shareholder of Zappos stock."

"We think that there is a huge opportunity for us to really accelerate the growth of the Zappos brand and culture, and we believe that Amazon is the best partner to help us get there faster… Amazon supports us in continuing to grow our vision as an independent entity, under the Zappos brand and with our unique culture.

"As you know, one of our core values is to build open and honest relationships with communication, and if I could have it my way, I would have shared much earlier that we were in discussions with Amazon so that all employees could be involved in the decision process that we went through along the way," Hsieh added.

"Unfortunately, because Amazon is a public company, there are securities laws that prevented us from talking about this to most of our employees until today."

For more on the deal you can check out the Zappos blog

Via CNET and New York Times