Rumors of the next big physical retail acquisition are swirling in the New Year air with one popular analyst predicting two retail behemoths could join forces before 2018 is up. Gene Munster of Loup Ventures wrote in a post earlier this week that Amazon may be looking to acquire Target, and it could be happening soon.
“As for retail stores, Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods 470 stores along with testing of the Amazon Go retail concept is evidence that Amazon sees the future of retail as a combination of mostly online and some offline. Despite gaining Whole Foods, Amazon’s ~470 store presence still dwarf’s Walmart at 11,695 (global). If Amazon acquires Target’s that would jump its store count to about 2,300,” Munster wrote on the Loup website in a post detailing his predictions for 2018.
Munster also noted that as far as the demographics at play, the Amazon-Target acquisition makes sense. Target has been focused on moms, he said, a demographic which is also central to Amazon’s approach to expanding its market share. Amazon has spent campaign dollars targeting the demographic through promotions around Prime along with loading Prime Video with kid-friendly content over the past several years.
"Amazon will acquire Target," Munster continued. "Amazon believes the future of retail is a mix of mostly online and some offline. Target is the ideal offline partner for Amazon for two reasons, shared demographic and manageable but comprehensive store count.”
As far-fetched as this might seem, Munster has plenty of clout in the financial and analyst industries. According to CNBC, he spent 21 years as an influential technology analyst with Piper Jaffray, then co-founded his venture capital firm Loup at the beginning of 2017.
CNBC also reported that Target shares rose 3.7 percent Tuesday following the post’s debut. While Amazon and Target have yet to comment on the speculation, Deli Market News will be ready to report as the story unfolds.