Its just been confirmed over the past while that Zappos has been bought by Amazon for $890M in a direct swap of stock – Zappos have yearly turnover of approx. 1 Billion USD . Its an interesting move – one that seems to make sense – in a video by Jeff Bezos from Amazon he talks about the similarity in the “culture of obsession with the customer”.
Certainly in the case of Zappos they truly believe in providing fantastic service – and are a transparent company in terms of external communications – almost to it being slightly cult-like. It would seem that from an online retail perspective that Amazon could incorporate the obsessive communications model and open itself up to being more communicative as a company talking directly to customers and beyond (they had a bad run of it recently with the #amazonfail fiasco – very badly handled). Tony Hseih and about 400+ employees are on Twitter, they blog constantly, ZapposTV – they try and turn the company inside out so that you get to see whats going on. Be interesting to hear other voices and analysis over the next while – its not exactly a huge shocker that Amazon would buy it – it softens up Amazons brand, injects some colour – whilst making business sense. And for Zappos it means they can scale – and beyond the US where I think it only operates now.
Stay tuned – it will generate a huge amount of buzz. Its been a while since someone got taken over – last one was Sun by Oracle. Watch for trending topics on Twitter – #zappos, #Amazon.