As worries about potential antitrust actions rise and an impending meeting with the FTC approaches, Amazon is making a notable move to reduce the number of its private-label products. According to The Wall Street Journal, Amazon plans to gradually eliminate most of its clothing brands, discontinuing 27 out of 30, and will also halt all private-label furniture collections, which include the Rivet and Stone & Beam brands.
Amazon Intends to Keep its Main Brands Intact, Namely Amazon Basics & Essentials
This decision aligns with the e-commerce titan’s aim to prioritize products that resonate with consumers. Matt Taddy, Vice President of Amazon Private Brands, clarified that their choices are driven by customer preferences, underscoring their dedication to excellence and value through flagship brands like Amazon Basics and Amazon Essentials.
Notably, Amazon will retain three of its clothing brands: Essentials, Collection, and Amazon Aware. While the company hasn’t directly connected this decision to the expected FTC legal action, the connection appears more significant than mere chance. Amazon’s representatives are set to confer with FTC Chair Lina Khan and commissioners Rebecca Kelly Slaughter and Alvaro Bedoya in the upcoming week. This conversation is seen as a final effort to prevent legal actions. The meeting follows a four-year inquiry into Amazon’s purported anti-competitive actions, with a separate lawsuit ongoing concerning deceptive Prime subscriptions.
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The FTC’s primary focus is on Amazon’s interaction with third-party vendors. Information from 2020 indicated that Amazon utilized internal data from these vendors to develop its own products, resulting in a choice to stop favoring its in-house brands in search results. This signifies a transformative phase for the retail behemoth. In the upcoming weeks, we can expect to gain further insight into the ramifications of this decision and how it fits into the wider legal context for Amazon.