Amazon Takes On Etsy
(Author : Grant Arnott)
Amazon has formally declared war on Bambi, firing its cannons at artisan online marketplace Etsy’s $2 billion revenues. This week the e-commerce Goliath launched Handmade at Amazon, a clone of Etsy’s handcrafted product marketplace. The site is now live featuring approximately 5,000 sellers pitching more than 80,000 products. Handmade at Amazon is claiming that around 30 percent of the products can be personalised for the customer.
Like Etsy, Handmade at Amazon aims to be a “factory-free zone” dedicated to small run, special products created largely by artisans. Last month Etsy announced a program to connect its sellers with manufacturers to build scale, perhaps getting wind of Amazon’s intentions and shifting strategy in a move that raised the eyebrows of core Etsy fans. Now, some investors see the future of Etsy as clouded, given its growth may have to come from a move to a higher level of manufacturing, at odds with its core value proposition.
While Amazon has dominated mass merchandise online for over a decade, Etsy is the recognised leader in handcrafted products online since launching in 2005. The launch of Handmade at Amazon immediately dealt a blow to Etsy’s share price, which dropped 10 percent in pre-market trading before finishing the day down four percent.