Charlotte Talks: Amazon Goes On A Shopping Spree

Nov 23, 2018

Friday, Nov. 23, 2018

Amazon generated more than $27 billion in e-commerce revenue in the second quarter of 2018.
Credit Flickr / Public.Resource.Org

Amazon has been filling its cart with all kinds of businesses, from a grocery store to a pharmacy. What used to be a book seller is now a seller of everything. What's behind this?

This program originally aired Aug. 14, 2018

Now that the Thanksgiving leftovers are wrapped up, it’s time to get started on the holiday shopping. For many, that will mean browsing Amazon.

There was a time when Amazon was a bookstore. Now, it’s a media company, grocery store owner, cloud computing service, apparel maker and, with its latest purchase, a pharmacy. There’s also talk of Amazon’s own shipping service to rival the US Postal Service and UPS.

The company’s acquisition spree has been described as “unprecedented,” but it's also raised questions about whether Amazon is approaching monopoly status.

Amazon has come a long way from its origins as an online bookstore with a bare bones homepage, as seen here from 1994.
Credit Amazon

What’s driving the company’s expansion? Is there anything Amazon ISN’T interested in buying?


Carolyn Adolph, reporter, KUOW, Seattle; co-host of KUOW's "Prime(d)" podcast (@carolynadolph)

Priya Anand, reporter covering Amazon and e-commerce, The Information (@Priyasideas)

Steven Cox, professor, Queens University of Charlotte's McColl School of Business