Amazon(NASDAQ:AMZN) just announced plans to purchase Whole Foods (NASDAQ:WFM). The deal, valued at about $13.7 billion, also offers a few potential lessons for small businesses.
Whole Foods, which broke onto the scene offering stores full or organic food options, has struggled and faced pressure from advisors to sell or merge with another company. Amazon, a company that has broken into seemingly every market out there through acquisition or expansion, seems like a perfect fit.
Now, it’s unlikely that small businesses will be involved in many deals of this magnitude. But you can still learn from what Whole Foods and Amazon accomplished and from the challenges they face.
For its part, Whole Foods was able to disrupt the grocery industry with a unique concept. But as the years passed and more competitors broke into the space, it failed to adapt quickly enough to keep profits high. Amazon, on the other hand, started as an online bookstore and then proceeded to evolve quickly, breaking into new markets ranging from music streaming to grocery delivery.
The Importance of Continuous Innovation
Both brands were based on innovative concepts when they began. But only one company was able to keep up with the times enough to remain profitable. That doesn’t mean your small business has to break into every industry under the sun. But it can be beneficial to keep an eye on new trends and opportunities so that you don’t let your business fall into complacency and be swallowed up by a sea of competitors who are willing to adapt to thrive.