With operations in eight countries, Amazon Business has reached “more than $10 billion in annualized sales,” Amazon.com Inc. said in a blog post today.
Amazon Business launched in April 2015 and hit $1 billion in sales within its first year. It now operates in seven countries in addition to the United States: The United Kingdom, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, Japan and India.
“Our customers range from sole proprietors to large enterprises with tens of thousands of employees on a single account,” Amazon says. “We serve millions of businesses worldwide, including hospitals, universities, Fortune 50 companies, government agencies, daycares, restaurants and more.”
Amazon Business has taken several steps to expand the range of buying features, including Business Prime Shipping and the ability for buyers to manage online workflow of purchasing approvals. It also integrates in dozens of e-procurement software applications.
Third-party sellers on Amazon Business account for more than half of its sales, Amazon said in the blog post.
The marketplace offers hundreds of millions of products from hundreds of thousands of merchants who pay Amazon a commission on each sale, the company says.
Amazon’s foray into the B2B market challenges Staples Inc. and Costco Wholesale Corp., as well as smaller specialty distributors. By 2020, 12.1% of that $9.39 trillion market will be online, according to Forrester Research Inc.
Amazon, which also conducts B2B sales in the Automotive & Industrial section of Amazon.com outside of Amazon Business, has plenty of room to grow in the B2B market, industry analysts say. Colin Sebastian, a financial analyst at R.W. Baird & Co., estimated in a note today that Amazon’s B2B sales will exceed $25 billion by 2021 and could eventually surpass its retail sales. In a separate forecast, John Bruno, senior analyst covering B2B e-commerce at Forrester Research Inc., estimates that Amazon’s B2B sales will reach between $20 billion and $25 billion as early as next year. Amazon is listed as No. 1 in the Internet Retailer Top 1000.
Bloomberg News contributed to this report.
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