Whole Foods CEO says he’s ‘not afraid to get fired’ over disagreements with Amazon


Whole Foods co-founder and CEO John Mackey alluded to recurring tensions between the grocery store chain and mother or father firm Amazon throughout a company-wide assembly on Tuesday. Enterprise Insider obtained audio of his remarks. Mackey appeared thrilled with Whole Foods’ development beneath Amazon, saying “it’s been an unbelievable yr.” However he additionally revealed that friction and discord between himself and Amazon’s high-ranking executives has been one thing of an everyday incidence.

“I’m certain that Amazon has in all probability gotten extra disagreement from me than another single individual, and probably greater than everybody else mixed,” Mackey stated. “I’ve the least quantity to lose. I’ve carried out this for 40 years. I’m financially safe. I really like Whole Foods.” Mackey made hundreds of thousands from the Amazon deal.

Amazon has rapidly introduced its services to Whole Foods after competing the $13.7 billion acquisition.
Whole Foods

Amazon introduced its $13.7 billion acquisition of Whole Foods virtually precisely a yr in the past and has acted rapidly to carry a lot of its personal services to the upscale grocery shops. Amazon gives same-day Whole Foods supply via Prime Now, sells Echo audio system, Fireplace TVs, Kindles, and different {hardware} at pop-up retailers inside Whole Foods, and extra not too long ago started providing unique in-store reductions and promotions to Prime subscribers.

Mackey didn’t specify precisely what he and Amazon have clashed over, however made it clear that he by no means hesitates to push again if he deems it essential. “I in the end am not afraid to get fired so — not that I believe they’re going to fireplace me — however I’m not afraid of it, so that provides me a place of power to communicate fact to energy when it’s essential to achieve this, and I’ve carried out it many, many instances.” He adopted that up by saying “Amazon has listened, and so they have been very respectful, and so they have backed off.”

There’s at all times a little bit of tradition conflict that comes from main acquisitions like this, but it surely’s shocking to see Mackey being so direct and blunt about it with the grocery store chain’s staff. “I’m total happy with the place we’re at,” he stated, earlier than transferring on to essentially the most outstanding line of this entire factor — and doubtless managing to anger each his spouse and boss Jeff Bezos in the identical breath. “Does that imply I really like completely all the things about Amazon? No. I don’t. I don’t love completely all the things about my spouse both, however on steadiness, I really like like 98 %. That’s a reasonably good ratio primarily based on my earlier relationships.” He even received into some marriage recommendation, so take a look at Enterprise Insider’s story for the complete rundown.




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