Amazon flexes muscles but Reliance holds deep war chest


NEW DELHI: The face-off between Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) and Jeff Bezos-run behemoth Amazon over the retail assets of Future Group in India has once again exposed the ambition of the so-called "gatekeeper for e-commerce" to keep the reins of a growing retail market in the country in its hands.
The legal battle in Singapore aims to stop Reliance Retail Ventures Ltd (RRVL), a subsidiary of RIL, from dominating the burgeoning retail market in India estimated to reach $1.1-$1.3 trillion by 2025, from $0.7 trillion in 2019, growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 9-11 per cent (according to the latest report by Boston Consulting Group and the Retailers’ Association of India).
That Amazon does not like new and direct competition to its business in any country and will do anything to somehow scuttle it, was conveyed earlier this month by the US House Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee examining the health of competition in digital markets and the business practices of Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google. "Amazon’s acquisition strategy has primarily focused on purchasing its competitors and companies that operate in adjacent markets, providing access to additional valuable customer data. This strategy has effectively protected and expanded Amazon’s market power in e-commerce and helped Amazon extend that power to other markets. Over the past two decades, Amazon has acquired at least 100 companies," the US House panel said in its 450-page report. "Amazon has monopoly power over many small- and medium-sized businesses that do not have a viable alternative to Amazon for reaching online consumers," the report further read.
"Amazon has engaged in extensive anticompetitive conduct in its treatment of third-party sellers. Publicly, Amazon describes third-party sellers as ‘partners’.
But internal documents show that, behind closed doors, the company refers to them as ‘internal competitors’," the US House panel report stressed.

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