Get up to date with this week's ecommerce headlines from around the globe.
Amazon has opened its largest delivery station in Abu Dhabi
Ahead of Prime Day sales kicking off in July, Amazon has opened the second largest delivery station in the United Arab Emirates. The station will provide same-day and one-day deliveries to customers across Abu Dhabi and even some areas further out. The opening will provide opportunities for new employees and also for Amazon’s delivery service partners in the UAE.
Amazon executives raise concerns about losing warehouse staff
Amazon has received a lot of criticism for how it treats its employees, mainly due to poor working conditions and injury rates. A leaked internal document has revealed that the ecommerce giant could run out of warehouse staff in the United States by 2024, as its attrition rate reached 123% last year.
Amazon unveils new warehouse robot
Amazon has introduced a new warehouse robot, which is able to move heavy carts and operate safely with other humans working in the area. The company claims the robot is not replacing human workers, but rather, will help to address safety concerns amidst Amazon’s recent injury rate and labour crisis.
Shopify & Twitter team up to launch Twitter Shopping
Shopify has partnered with Twitter to launch Twitter Shopping as a social commerce strategy. The platform will have 2 sections, Shop Spotlight and Twitter Shops. Spotlight allows merchants to offer up to 5 products directly on their business profiles in a carousel format, whereas Twitter Shops is a separate shopping tab where merchants can showcase up to 50 products, essentially a new social storefront.
Walmart takes majority stake in automation technology company Symbotic
Retail giant, Walmart, has acquired a majority stake in automation firm, Symbotic. As an expansion of a previous partnership, Walmart aims to bring Symbotic’s automation technology to all 42 of its regional distribution centres over the next 8 years. The technology will assist the ecommerce company to increase its capacity to ship and receive products to stores and better its inventory accuracy.
Klarna announces loyalty card and in-store payments in the UK
BNPL company, Klarna, is launching a ‘Loyalty Card’ feature in its app, where customers are able to access their physical loyalty cards digitally. It has also rolled out a ‘Digital Cards’ feature, allowing users to purchase any item in three interest-free instalments at participating retailers. These additions mean UK consumers do not have to carry another card, and the shopping process is made more convenient.
Klarna fires back at Barclays BNPL report
The head of Klarna UK has slammed Barclays, calling the bank’s BNPL report “mind-boggling” and “irresponsible”. The multinational bank recently published a report on the BNPL industry, in which it warned of the dangerous amount of debt consumers could find themselves in if they rely on the service.
Buy-now-pay-later regulations strengthened and will now include ‘affordability checks’
The UK BNPL market doubled in 12 months last year, with 37% of British citizens having used a payment-splitting plan, from companies such as Klarna or Clearpay. As the UK government attempts to regulate the BNPL sector, ‘affordability checks’ have been added, including tougher regulations of interest-free BNPL credit agreements. Lenders will need to ensure the loans are affordable, and providers must conduct affordability assessments before offering customers one of the payment splitting plans.
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