After a recent Reuters report citing internal Amazon India documents highlighted how the company creates knockoffs and manipulates search results to boost its own products, U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren has called for breaking up Amazon.
Amazon Created Knock-Offs and Manipulated Search Results in India
“These documents show what we feared about Amazon’s monopoly power—that the company is willing and able to rig its platform to benefit its bottom line while stiffing small businesses and entrepreneurs. This is one of the many reasons we need to break it up,” wrote U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren on Twitter.
For context, the Reuters report citing Amazon India’s internal documents suggests that Amazon employees used proprietary data about other brands, including customer returns on Amazon India to optimize its own portfolio. This includes products under AmazonBasics and Solimo branding.
According to the report, “use information from Amazon.in to develop products and then leverage the Amazon.in platform to market these products to our customers” was allegedly the strategy of Solimo products. The report also points out one instance where a seller witnessed a decline in sales after ads for similar AmazonBasics products were shown at a lower price.
Soon after the report was published, the Alliance of Digital India Foundation (ADIF) and the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) condemned Amazon’s ‘predatory playbook’ and urged the government’s intervention on the matter. You can check their statements from the embedded links.
While this is a sensational topic, none of these revelations would come as a surprise to anyone familiar with Amazon’s strategies. If you are interested to learn more, I would highly recommend watching this 2019 TechAltar video highlighting a similar incident, involving the June smart oven.