Retail has a funny way of surprising you, just when you think there are set patterns and understood norms a left field acquisition comes out of the blue, one that now looking at it makes sense.
The UK and large parts of North America were set on retail market including the upmarket store Whole Foods as a bit part player, struggling for real cut through and profit generation. A store that could as easily vanish as prosper. Wonderful displays, great product provenance, glitzy locations and rather poor profit (for poor in the UK read: none).
The supermarket was always ripe for a change, it needed more operational nous and some lower overheads. I always thought it would be a visitor to these shores or taken over by a larger retailer, it seemed the trajectory. I never would have thought that the retailer in question would be Amazon. Even saying Amazon is a retailer goes against the grain for a bricks and mortar zealot like me. Yet the more I look at it and the more I consider the ramifications the more I think the idea could be the saviour of Whole Foods and the leapfrog Amazon needs in gaining access to a market previously untapped.
The portfolio of 432 stores ( 410 in the US,13 in Canada and nine in UK) serves customers who are of higher than average disposable income, have a propensity to buy with…