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SEATTLE — Amazon Inc. is building up its presence in the brick-and-mortar retail world with a deal to acquire Whole Foods Market Inc. for approximately $13.7 billion.
The definitive agreement carries a $42-per-share price tag in an all-cash agreement.
"Millions of people love Whole Foods Market because they offer the best natural and organic foods, and they make it fun to eat healthy," said Jeff Bezos, Amazon founder and CEO. "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, according to a release from the two companies.
John Mackey will remain as CEO of Whole Foods Market. The retailer, which operates more than 460 stores in the United States, will keep its headquarters in Austin, Texas. Amazon is based in Seattle.
"This partnership presents an opportunity to maximize value for Whole Foods Market's shareholders, while at the same time extending our mission and bringing the highest quality, experience, convenience and innovation to our customers," said Mackey, Whole Foods Market co-founder.
Completion of the transaction is subject to approval by Whole Foods Market's shareholders, regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions. The deal is expected to close during the second half of the year.