Goldman Sachs was 'freaked out' by a rumour that Trump would personally kill the Amazon/Whole Foods deal because of Jeff Bezos

Drew Angerer/Getty ImagesAmazon CEO Jeff Bezos, left, listens carefully to President Donald Trump, right.
  • Goldman Sachs’ Gregg Lemkau says that there was a rumour that President Trump might try to personally intervene to block Amazon’s $US13.7 billion purchase of Whole Foods.
  • The move would have been motivated by animosity between Trump and Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, said Lemkau.

Goldman Sachs’ Gregg Lemkau said that the firm was worried by a rumour that President Trump would personally intervene to block Amazon’s $US13.7 billion purchase of Whole Foods, right before the deal closed – in a move that could have been driven by animosity for Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, he said.

“For four days we were freaked out,” Lemkau said, speaking on stage at the Goldman Sachs Tech and Internet Conference in San Francisco on Tuesday. Lemkau serves as co-head of investment banking at Goldman Sachs, which assisted Amazon with its purchase of the grocery chain last summer.

Lemkau said that President Trump’s well-publicised spats with Bezos made people think that the deal might not get federal approval. The rumour was that Trump would try to use anti-trust policy to prevent the purchase from going through.

He compared it to what’s happening with another mega-merger, currently in the works: Trump is said to be the driving force behind an ongoing lawsuit from the Department of Justice, which aims to prevent a merger between AT&T and Time Warner. Time Warner owns CNN, a news vertical that Trump has publicly feuded with on several occasions.

The White House and Amazon did not immediately respond to request for comment from Business Insider.

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