Amazon Prime was launched in Brazil

Amazon's service now has more than 100 million customers in 18 countries.

Amazon launched this Tuesday, September 10 in Brazil, its subscription service for entertainment and shopping products, Amazon Prime. With this presentation, Amazon’s service now has more than 100 million customers in 18 countries.

The Amazon Prime service offers users unlimited free shipping across the country and maximum delivery time of 48 hours in more than 90 municipalities. The world’s largest e-commerce portal also has a menu of more than 500,000 products and offers free digital books and magazines to face established local rivals, including Netflix, Magazine Luiza, and Mercado Libre.

Prime’s strength against its competitors goes beyond free shipping. This service also includes a package of $ 9.90 per month or $ 89 per year with products such as Prime Video with thousands of movies and series; Prime Music, with a catalog of more than two million songs; Prime Reading, which includes April magazines and hundreds of digital books; and Twitch Prime, of the games.

The catalog in Brazil represents a small fraction of the tens of millions of service items in the United States and other countries where Amazon has been operating for a longer time. However, the launch in Brazil represents the most massive initial launch of Amazon Prime since its creation in 2005.

The initiative has become the most penetrating movement of the American giant since its arrival in the country since 2012, initially with the sale of books and in the last two years gradually expanding opening the platform for the purchase of electronic products, clothing, and sporting goods.

The offer of free shipping and delivery within two days in 90 cities reveals an aggressive commitment of Amazon in a market where, unlike countries like Germany and the United Kingdom, India and Japan, they must face stiff competition from their established rivals.

Prime’s debut comes after much speculation about when and how difficult it would be to start operating for the retail company in Brazil.

Amazon direct sales in the South American country began with direct sales of 11 product categories in January. The company has its retail distribution center in Cajamar (SP).

“We went as quickly as possible and as slowly as possible,” Jamil Ghani, international vice president of Amazon Prime International, told Reuters.

Professionals had pointed out the logistics infrastructure and local tax aspects as some of the biggest challenges Amazon had to overcome before launching a complete offer of products and services in Brazil.

In anticipation of the Amazon offensive, local rivals such as Magazine Luiza, B2W, Via Varejo, and even Mercado Libre have been expanding investments in technology and logistics to make increasingly short delivery offers.

Brazilian Amazon president Alex Szapiro minimized the focus on competition, preferring to emphasize the company’s attention to develop a package that meets the demand of the local consumer.

“Our focus is the customer, Brazil has 210 million people, and I think everyone can be our customers,” said Szapiro.

Amazon effect in the Brazilian stock market

With the announcement of Amazon, the shares of retailers with a strong presence in electronic commerce fell sharply in the Brazilian stock market last Tuesday. At 10:30 am, B2W fell 4.6%, Via Varejo dropped 4.4% and Magazine Luiza dropped 3.7%, leading the losses of Ibovespa, which fell 0.05%.

Brazil is the leading e-commerce market in Latin America. 45% of e-commerce sales in the region originate in Brazil.