Amazon and Whole Foods Market, Inc. announced that they have entered into a definitive merger agreement under which Amazon will acquire Whole Foods Market for US$42 per share in an all-cash transaction valued at approximately US$13.7 billion, including Whole Foods Market’s net debt.
“Millions of people love Whole Foods Market because they offer the best natural and organic foods, and they make it fun to eat healthy,” Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon, said in a statement. “Whole Foods Market has been satisfying, delighting and nourishing customers for nearly four decades — they’re doing an amazing job and we want that to continue.”
Whole Foods Market will continue to operate stores under the Whole Foods Market brand and source from trusted vendors and partners around the world. John Mackey will remain as CEO of Whole Foods Market and Whole Foods Market’s headquarters will stay in Austin, Texas.
Acquiring Whole Foods will help Amazon in its long standing battle with Walmart. Walmart is also trying to catch up to Amazon in the e-commerce market. On Friday, Walmart announced a US$310 million deal to acquire the internet apparel retailer Bonobos, and last year it agreed to pay $3.3 billion for Jet.com to build some base in the e-commerce business.