The comes deal as Whole Foods has been trying to fend off pressure from shareholders frustrated by a sluggish stock price. Back in April, activist investor Jana Partners took an 8% stake in the company and pushed the board to look into strategic options including a sale.
Amazon, on the other hand, has been expanding beyond online
This is by far Amazon’s most ambitious move into physical retail. By acquiring the grocery chain, known for its health-first approach to food, the online retailer will get 460 stores in the US, Canada and the UK. Whole Foods Market will continue to operate stores under its own brand name.
"Millions of people love Whole Foods Market because they offer the best natural and organic foods, and they make it fun to eat healthy," Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos said in a press release. The companies expect the deal to close in the second half of the year.