Whole Foods to Cut Prices on Some Items

Amazon opens its grocery delivery service to Amazon Business customers

Amazon will lower Whole Foods prices right away and Prime members will get special discounts

Amazon is wasting no time putting its stamp on Whole Foods.

Amazon now says it wants to introduce "special savings and in-store benefits" for members of its Prime service, which could disrupt the grocery industry the way Amazon has impacted the rest of the retail universe.

Shares in Kroger Co and Sprouts Farmers Market Inc each shed around 7 percent of their value in after-hours trade, while Wal-Mart Stores Inc stock was down nearly 2 percent.

The move is a clear play at taking down grocery store rivals such as Walmart Stores Inc.

Beyond that, the companies said that "Amazon lockers" will be available in select Whole Foods stores, where customers will be able to have products shipped from Amazon.com to their local Whole Foods store.

Antitrust experts had expected the deal to win government approval because Amazon sells few groceries and Whole Foods itself makes up a small fraction of USA food sales. Shares of Whole Foods rose 0.72 percent to close at $41.98.

"We can't wait to start showing customers what's possible when Whole Foods Market and Amazon innovate together", said John Mackey, Whole Foods Market co-founder and CEO. Amazon will pay Whole Foods shareholders $42 per share, marking an 18 percent premium from its stock price the day before the tie-up was announced on June 16.

Both companies announced in a press release Thursday that Amazon's acquisition of Whole Foods would become official on Monday, August 28, and shoppers would see immediate results in stores.

Whole Foods shareholders approved the takeover yesterday but it requires approval from Canadian regulators.

The arrangement will cement Amazon more firmly in the physical retail world-most notably the grocery sector-in which it has been experimenting via AmazonFresh, Amazon Books, and the checkout-free Amazon Go stores.

- Whole Foods-brand products will now be available through Amazon.com and other Prime platforms, such as Prime Now, the same-day delivery service available in some markets.

For example, bananas can cost 99 cents a pound at Whole Foods versus 49 cents at Wal-Mart.

The regulatory investigation into Amazon's acquisition of Whole Foods has wrapped up quicker than many expected.

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