Online retailer Amazon is expanding its footprint into Newark after announcing it was merging with Whole Foods Market, Inc in an all-cash deal valued at $13.7 billion.
Whole Food recently opened a store in the city in the former Hahne & Co. building between Broad and Halsey Streets.
Amazon is also the parent of the audio book company, Audible, which is headquartered at 1 Washington Place in Newark and is expanding to nearby buildings.
Whole Foods Market will continue to operate stores under the Whole Foods Market brand and source from trusted vendors and partners around the world. John Mackey will remain as CEO of Whole Foods Market and Whole Foods Market’s headquarters will stay in Austin, Texas.
“Millions of people love Whole Foods Market because they offer the best natural and organic foods, and they make it fun to eat healthy,” said Jeff Bezos, Amazon founder and CEO. “Whole Foods Market has been satisfying, delighting and nourishing customers for nearly four decades – they’re doing an amazing job and we want that to continue.”
“This partnership presents an opportunity to maximize value for Whole Foods Market’s shareholders, while at the same time extending our mission and bringing the highest quality, experience, convenience and innovation to our customers,” said John Mackey, Whole Foods Market co-founder and CEO.
In addition to Newark, Whole Foods operates supermarkets in Montclair, West Orange, Paramus, Clark, Morristown, Madison, and other locations in the Garden State.
Completion of the transaction is subject to approval by Whole Foods Market's shareholders, regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions. The parties expect to close the transaction during the second half of 2017.