Amazon is really cranking out the new initiatives these days. I'm sure you heard about Amazon Prime Air. This week, the company expanded its grocery delivery service AmazonFresh into its third market.
Now, we learn that Amazon is headed into Sam's Club/Costco territory with a service called Pantry. This is according to USA Today, which cites three people familiar with the effort.
According to the report, the service, which would be run by Billy Hegeman, will launch in 2014, and will target existing Amazon Prime customers with about 2,000 grocery products initially. Customers, the report says, will be able to "put as many of these items into a set sized box, up to a specific weight limit," and "if the products fit and they don't exceed the maximum weight, Amazon will ship the box for a small fee."
Don't expect these boxes to be delivered by drones anytime soon, as Amazon says it could be a few years before it's able to start that service up, due to regulations. Some are very skeptical about whether Prime Air will really even be able to exist.
But targeting businesses like Sam's Club and Costco is much more realistic, and probably the next logical step in Amazon's business. We expect AmazonFresh will be expanding more rapidly in the coming year as well.