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Amazon Prime Day Is Reportedly Going to Be Postponed Until August
From:
Kathleen Greenler Sexton --- Subscription Expert Kathleen Greenler Sexton --- Subscription Expert
For Immediate Release:
Dateline: Boston , MA
Tuesday, April 07, 2020

 

Reports are circulating in the media that Amazon is considering postponing its popular Prime Day because of the coronavirus crisis, says USA Today. The massive online sale, sometimes referred to as Black Friday in July, started in 2015 to reward Prime members and attract new ones with great deals on millions of items. Because the membership event has been so successful for the online retailer and its merchants, Amazon has continued the sale each year in July. This year it could be postponed into August or beyond, according to internal notes obtained by USA Today, Reuters and Vice. Amazon has not confirmed, nor denied, the news.

“We probably have to promote sooner, which will be difficultif we’re capacity constrained,” General Counsel David Zapolsky wrote in notesfrom a daily meeting of Amazon executives. The notes said this would result ina $300 million impact “worst case,” with a $100 million hit being more likely, saidReuters.

Last year’s PrimeDay extended from 24 to 48 hours, and it was the company’s most successfulshopping event in company history. In two days, members in 18 countries boughtmore than 175 million items, including everything from clothing and electronicsto groceries and beauty products. Prime Day 2019 was also the biggest salesevent ever for Amazon devices.

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If the event is so successful, why would Amazon consider postponing it? COVID-19 has changed the entire economic landscape of our country. It is hard to predict what the impacts will be a month from now, much less in July or August. As things stand right now, Amazon is in the process of hiring 100,000 U.S. workers to try to fill the demand for fulfilling and delivering orders and it has offered a $2 per hour incentive. Its focus is on that right now, not on preparing for a summer shopping event.

In addition, the coronavirus pandemic has had other impacts thatAmazon is dealing with. At the Staten Island, New York fulfillment center,workers walked off the job, complaining about working conditions and workersafety. Christian Smalls, one of the organizers of that walkout, was laterfired. Employees at more than 50 Amazon fulfillment centers have now testedpositive for COVID-19, accordingto Business Insider. A second walkout is now in the works. Workers want thewarehouses with confirmed cases of employees with the coronavirus to be temporarilyshut down and properly sanitized.

Amazon and Amazon employees disagree as to whether or not the company is adequately protecting the health of its employees.
Image courtesy of Amazon

Amazon disputes the claims that they are not concerned aboutworker safety. According to an April2 blog post, Dave Clark, senior vice president of worldwide operations forAmazon, said the company has implemented 150 process changes as a result of thecoronavirus. This includes checking the temperatures of employees, providingpersonal protective equipment to Amazon workers, ensuring that socialdistancing is possible throughout Amazon facilities, and following WHO and CDCguidelines for cleaning and sanitation.

“Given the uncertainty surrounding COVID-19, we arecommitted to continue making adjustments to our business as we learn more,” saidAmazon in a March24 blog post. “We have increased the frequency and intensity of cleaning atall sites, including regular sanitization of door handles, handrails, touchscreens, scanners, and other frequently touched areas. We’re also requiringemployees and delivery service partners to clean and disinfect their workstations.”

Insider Take:

Amazon certainly has its hands full as a result of thecoronavirus. It seems like planning Prime Day is the least of the company’sworries right now. Whenever they choose to hold it, Prime members will eagerlyparticipate, especially since each year seems to get bigger and better. Lastyear, for example, Amazon kicked off the shopping extravaganza with a star-studded,live, online concert headlined by Taylor Swift. We can’t wait to see what theyhave in store this year – no matter when it is.

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