Amazon CEO Andy Jassy says it’s ‘hard to argue’ its retail business is a monopoly

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Amazon CEO Andy Jesse on CNBC Tuesday morning.

In his first television interview since taking over the reins from founder Jeff Bezos two months ago, Amazon CEO Andy Jesse called for new principles of antitrust scrutiny while facing a new slate of regulators and legislators.

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“When you look at whether a company is a monopoly or not, the first thing you look at is what kind of market segment they have,” Jassi said. In an interview recorded at Amazon headquarters with CNBC’s John Forte, which aired on Tuesday morning. “Our retail business accounts for about 1% of the worldwide retail market segment. It is nowhere near a majority stake.”

He said that monopolistic power is defined by the ability to “increase prices in an unrestricted manner” due to lack of competition.


“We compete with very large companies,” Jassi said. “These are companies like Walmart and Target and Kroger and some very successful digital companies like eBay and Etsy and Wayfair, and we don’t have the ability to raise prices in any kind of free way. Really, if you look at that. What we normally do is we are constantly slashing prices because there is a lot of competition in these markets.

“Sometimes the rhetoric sounds good, but you have to see what the reality is, and at 1% of the worldwide retail sector, it’s hard to argue that it’s a monopoly.”

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His comments suggest that the Amazon plans to remain in place for its long-term defense despite the changing landscape in Washington, DC.

However, Widely Followed Research from eMarketer Projects Amazon’s share of the US e-commerce market will increase from 39.8% in 2020 to 40.4% in 2021.

separately, A recent report by FactSet Says consumers are now spending more on Amazon than Walmart to take into account of third-party sales.

The new chair of the Federal Trade Commission, Leena Khan, while still in law school, attracted national attention when the Yale Law Review published her article, “Amazon’s Antitrust Paradox.” She argued that so-called “consumer welfare standards” – in which regulators look narrowly at prices – are inadequate for the digital economy. Khan believes a company like Amazon can abuse its market power, even if it uses that power to raise prices for consumers instead of lowering them.

Watch an excerpt from the interview below.

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