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10/14/2021

Amazon under fire from news source for copycat strategy

Latest Reuters report joins earlier Wall Street Journal, U.S. House Judiciary Committee dives into the retailer’s private label practices.
Dan Ochwat
Executive Editor
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Another news source has reported on alleged questionable tactics by Amazon and the development of its private brands.

This week Reuters released a special report saying the online and physical retailer has been imitating third-party products and fudging search results to improve and enhance the status of its own brands portfolio in India. The overseas report is similar to alleged claims made stateside in a Wall Street Journal report and an earlier hearing by an antitrust subcommittee of the U.S. House Judiciary Committee.

That report and subsequent hearings, including testimony from Jeff Bezos, then CEO before his transition to executive chair, claimed Amazon uses data and information collected on third-party sellers to develop similar Amazon own brand products, which Amazon has denied repeatedly.

The Reuters investigation said it has thousands of pages of internal Amazon documents, such as emails, strategy papers and business plans, that show the Amazon team in India ran a systematic campaign to create imitation items of products sold by other companies and then boosted search results to emphasize its own brand version.

The article said with India’s population of 1.3 billion people and a growing middle class, the region is a big one for the company to exploit and said the Solimo brand was a case study of how Amazon used data on products on its platform to gain an edge on its own brand.

Read the full report from Reuters here