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Amazon, Walmart Announce Major Acquisitions

Bonobos will join Walmart’s growing portfolio of e-commerce brands; meanwhile, Amazon will help Whole Foods continue to operate its locations.

Two of the world’s largest retailers announced major strategic moves Friday, with Walmart buying online apparel retailer Bonobos, and Amazon acquiring U.S. grocery chain Whole Foods Market, highlighting the increasing need for omni-channel retail solutions.

Walmart will pay $310 million in cash for Bonobos, giving the brick-and-mortar retailer an even larger stake in the e-commerce sphere following its acquisition of, Moosejaw and ModCloth, all in the last year. These previous acquistions have already led to a 63 percent jump in the  company’s U.S. e-commerce sales in the most recent quarter.

As part of the Bonobos acquisition, Andy Dunn, founder and chief executive officer of Bonobos, has signed on to oversee Walmart’s collection of digitally native, vertical brands. The acquisition is expected to close toward the end of the second quarter or beginning of the third quarter of this fiscal year.

“We’re seeing momentum in the business as we expand our value proposition with customers and it’s incredible to see how fast we’re moving,” says Marc Lore, president and chief executive officer, Walmart. “Adding innovators like Andy will continue to help us shape the future of Walmart, and the future of retail. I’m thrilled to welcome Andy and the entire Bonobos team. They’ve created an amazing product and customer experience, and that will not change. In fact, Andy will be a great influence on the company, especially in leading our collection of exclusive brands offered online.”

Meanwhile, e-commerce giant Amazon is continuing to make moves into brick-and-mortar. The company will pay approximately $13.7 billion for Whole Foods Market in an all-cash transaction that is expected to close during the second half of this year.

The grocery chain will continue to operate stores under the Whole Foods Market brand as well as source from trusted vendors and partners around the world. John Mackey will remain as Whole Foods’ chief executive officer.

“This partnership presents an opportunity to maximize value for Whole Foods Market’s shareholders, while at the same time extending our mission and bringing the highest quality, experience, convenience and innovation to our customers,” say Mackey.

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