Rumors of US e-commerce giant Amazon (AMZN) possibly floating a takeover bid for UK’s fourth largest supermarket chain WM Morrisons (London: MRW) has sent the shares of the latter on a bull run.
In London midday trade, Morrisons shares were up as much as 2.9%, when the FTSE 100 index inched 1.5% higher.
The takeover rumor was mentioned in Alphaville markets chatroom of the Financial Times. “There’s a mad story going round the traps about Amazon going for Morrison,” the chatroom moderator said, “Looks to me like wild speculation, but stranger things I guess…”
Earlier, the supermarket chain had struck deals relating to wholesale supply with Amazon. There have been speculations that Amazon has been looking to buy a major player as it moves to bricks-and-mortar retailing, especially after it took over Whole Foods back home.
Neither Amazon nor Morrisons was available for any comment on the same.
Back in November, a Barclays report gave the crown of India’s biggest online shopping platform in terms of gross merchandise value (GMV) to Amazon’s India arm, as it outdid Walmart (WMT) owned Flipkart.
And in October, Amazon posted stellar third-quarter results with upbeat net income, even as its net sales fell short of expectations. It was the same quarter that saw the e-commerce giant achieving a feat of joining the Trillion-dollar club with Apple (AAPL).
Amazon’s move to take over more players and cement its place in the global retail landscape could also mean there is more to the Morrison story than rumors. But for now, investors have very little to go on. If the deal goes through, Amazon significantly increases foothold in the Queen’s country.
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