Whole Foods under Amazon
In August 2018, Amazon acquired Whole Foods Market for $13.7 billion. Whole Foods was struggling with high costs and faced growing competition from traditional supermarkets offering more organic products. Prior to the acquisition, Whole Foods began rolling out a new order-to-shelf (OTS) inventory management system that many observers believed had led to shortages. For years, store team leaders at Whole Foods were empowered to make inventory decisions and tailor their stores to meet local needs, but OTS came with strict rules for purchasing and displaying goods which upset many employees. Should Amazon push Whole Foods to improve performance by emphasizing efficiency and standardization? Or should it aim to maintain a sense of empowerment among employees?