- Amazon and Best Buy have announced a new level of partnership.
- Best Buy will exclusively sell Amazon Fire TV Edition smart TVs both in stores and online, as well as become a direct seller on Amazon.com.
- It highlights how closely the retailers work together.
Amazon and Best Buy have deepened their retail partnership.
The two retailers, which are usually considered rivals in the electronics space, will collaborate to sell Amazon Fire-enabled TVs. The TVs will be equipped with Amazon’s software and will be available in Best Buy stores and online, including on Amazon.com where Best Buy will be a third-party seller. The TVs will be the only thing Best Buy lists on Amazon.
“Amazon and Best Buy have a long history of working together, and today we take our partnership to a new level,” Jeff Bezos, Amazon’s founder and CEO, said in a prepared statement.
There will be 11 TV models in all, which will be manufactured by Toshiba and Best Buy’s own brand Insignia. They will be branded as “Amazon Fire TV Edition” and have all functionality of the Amazon Fire TV software, including integration with Amazon Alexa. The first models will appear over the summer as part of the multi-year deal.
This isn’t the first time the two retailers have worked together. Best Buy already stocks and sells a range of Amazon Echo, Fire, and Kindle products, and it showcases them prominently in stores and in marketing material.
“What’s new in this partnership is the depths of the physical integration between the software and the hardware,” Best Buy CEO Hubert Joly told the Wall Street Journal. “The two companies are retailers but they’re also product companies.”
Best Buy and Amazon, of course, still compete on many fronts, like selling electronic accessories and video games.
In an interview with Business Insider in March, Joly said that Amazon is among the company’s major competitors that he sees as raising the bar for retail. Best Buy is quickly changing to meet customer demand in the smart home space.
“I love it that the bar is being raised, because I have so much confidence in our company, that we can be among those who raise the bar, and are not afraid of being bold and playing to win,” Joly said.
Moody’s retail analyst Charlie O’Shea called the new collaboration “mutually beneficial.”
“In this iteration, Best Buy gets new devices that will drive foot traffic into its stores, and Amazon gets a brick-and-mortar showroom for more of its proprietary products,” O’Shea said. “In sum, a win-win.”
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