Amazon expands into health services

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Amazon grows ever more powerful in this coronavirus crisis as e-commerce booms like never before. The tech giant is investing in testkits and even in a corona-proof supply chain. Is the giant going to target health services? It may well be, professor Scott Galloway thinks.

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Tests en toiletpaper delivered

Amazon will invest its complete quarterly profit of four billion dollars (and possibly even more) in protection against the virus and in its own test kits. Founder Jeff Bezos has already bought a laboratory for the tests, and may now expand testing privileges to the best-paying customers. While the rest of the economy is flat on the ground, Amazon hopes to strike a decisive blow.

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"Amazon is building the world's first fully vaccinated supply chain", NYU professor Scott Galloway told Belgian weekly Knack. Galloway is seen as an expert on Amazon, after writing the book The Four about the power of the foursome Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google, and famously predicted that Amazon would acquire the Whole Foods chain. He is convinced that Amazon can - and will - expand the testing from just staff to paying Prime customers.

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If Amazon wants to maintain its current growth rate, Bezos is forced to venture into new sectors. A possible new expansion would logically be in health services, Galloway explains: keeping up this rate would mean Amazon has to raise its turnover by some 100 billion dollars over the next five years - meaning roughly 50 million dollars per day.

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Unstoppable

The Amazon juggernaut is unstoppable, the professor thinks: especially as Amazon simply is 'too big to fail'. The company is said to be the only thing that keeps the American economy going: it has hired almost 200,000 new employees while the general picture is that over thirty million Americans have become unemployed. Galloway thinks a flood of employees is coming, from SMEs to larger companies - even if that will mean lesser conditions.

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In Galloway's opinion, only Shopify can turn out te become a dangerous competitor for Amazon. The company, that announced a collaboration with Facebook last week in order to allow smaller brands to open a webshop on the social network, completely reverses Amazon's business model: retailers and brands can open a webshop where they are the main focus and Shopify operates everything in the background. A million companies worldwide already use the service.

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As Amazon is (almost?) unstoppable, people can still expect a lot more from Amazon, Galloway points out. Even in the Benelux, where the coronacrisis thwarted an explosive launch of Amazon.nl, things will get very different very soon, Galloway predicts.

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