EcommerceBytes-NewsFlash, Number 2321 - July 01, 2010     1 of 3

Amazon.com Acquires Woot.com 'Daily Deals' Distributor

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Amazon.com acquired Woot.com, a wholesale distributor known for its Daily Deals website. Woot will become a subsidiary of Amazon, and founder Matt Rutledge will remain CEO. He said the deal wouldn't change much at Woot, but would simply help it grow faster. According to his letter announcing the sale, he is "geeked" about the opportunities to tap into Amazon.com's knowledge and resources, especially on the technology side. "This is about making the Woot brand, culture, and business even stronger than it is today."

Woot acquires inventory opportunistically from manufacturers and sells it through a number of channels, including to bulk retailers and chains, online and offline. It also sells on a drop-ship basis for other retailers. But it's best know for its own retail channel, Woot.com, a daily deals site that is joined by sister sites such as Shirt.Woot.com and Wine.Woot.com. The Woot sites are now its largest channel, according to Rutledge.

As outlined in Wednesday's AuctionBytes Blog post, there are a number of ways Amazon could leverage Woot, both as a source of inventory and as a liquidator, and Amazon third-party Marketplace sellers may be concerned. Amazon will also gain greater insight into wholesale and retail channels, also helping it spot new opportunities.

Amazon.com said in a statement that the acquisition would foster the long-term growth of Woot, "allowing it to continue its passion for serving customers with low prices across a broad selection of products. Following the acquisition, Woot will continue to be managed independently from its headquarters outside of Dallas, Texas." The acquisition is expected to close in the third quarter.

Woot had $164 million in revenue in 2008, up from $117.4 million in 2007 - 2009 figures are not available. The companies did not disclose the purchase price. Last year, Amazon acquired Zappos for about $850 million in cash and stock.

In 2007, Woot partnered with Yahoo to launch Sellout.Woot through Yahoo Shopping. Last year, Woot launched Deals.Woot.com, an aggregator of daily deals that allowed eBay PowerSellers and other online merchants to submit their deals to the site.

Read more about what Matt Rutledge had to say, and let us know what you think of Amazon's acquisition of Woot.com by posting a comment on the AuctionBytes Blog.


About the author:

Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com.


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