• Reuters reports that the UK's Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has provisionally approved Amazon's $575 million purchase of a minority stake in food delivery company Deliveroo, which competes with the likes of Uber Eats.
Originally there were objections to the purchase on the grounds that it would give Amazon too much market power and would stifle competition, but Reuters notes that "the CMA said on Friday it had become clear that the health emergency was having a significant negative impact on Deliveroo's revenues, given the closure of a large number of the restaurants available through its platform during the lockdown."
An Amazon investment, in other words, would give Deliveroo a lifeline it may need in order to stay viable through the pandemic crisis.
Reuters reports, meanwhile, that Amazon is planning a launch of something it is calling Ultra Fast Fresh in the UK, which would essentially replicate what it has been offering in the US for some time.
The goal is to take advantage of Ocado's problems in the UK, as it struggles "to open additional grocery delivery slots for consumers due to unprecedented demand caused by COVID-19 related lockdowns."
Amazon has offered grocery delivery for a fee, paid either per-order or on a monthly basis. The change would basically make it part of Amazon Prime, and "is aimed at bringing rapid grocery delivery to almost 40% of UK households by the end of the year." The move will require Amazon to retrofit "nine existing depots within the country to handle fresh produce and fulfill grocery orders within hours."