Amazon closes warehouses in France, tries to make US shoppers buy less

Amazon closes warehouses in France, tries to make US shoppers buy less

Enlarge / An Amazon logistics heart in Brétigny-sur-Orge, France, on April 13, 2020.

Amazon has shut down all six of its distribution facilities in France in the intervening time following a ruling by a French court docket that it was not taking enough measures to guard its warehouse employees from COVID-19.
The court docket dominated Tuesday that Amazon should cease promoting “non-essential” objects in France by Wednesday or face a nice of €1 million (about $1.1 million) per day till it comes up with a stronger plan to guard the well being of its workers.
While the ruling permits the corporate to maintain sending objects equivalent to meals, drugs, and “hygiene products,” firm executives mentioned the mandate was too broad to interpret. “Is a baby bottle a hygiene product? Yes, I think so,” Amazon govt Frédéric Duval instructed The Wall Street Journal. “But is this what the judge thinks is a hygiene product? I don’t know.”
The go well with was filed by a bunch of French employee unions who alleged circumstances inside Amazon’s warehouses theyre insufficiently protected for coping with COVID-19. Amazon filed a direct attraction to the ruling, saying on the time, “We disagree with today’s decision by the Nanterre court and are currently assessing its implications for our French logistics sites. We will also continue to work with all stakeholders and provide the necessary clarifications as they have done since the beginning of this unprecedented crisis.”
In an inner memo to French unions, obtained by Reuters, the corporate mentioned its amenities can be closed by a minimum of April 20 with the intention to “assess the inherent risks in the COVID-19 epidemic and take the necessary measures to ensure the safety of its employees.”

Excess demand

Demand for each important and frivolous items has soared for Amazon worldwide in latest theyeks as buyers are usually not solely making an attempt to keep away from going out in public to native shops, but additionally lots of these brick-and-mortar outlets have shuttered—some briefly, some completely—in response to the novel coronavirus menace.
Amazon’s methods and employees have been overwhelmed with the push. The firm has quickly moved to rent 175,000 new warehouse and supply workers, even whereas warning of delays, de-prioritizing shipments of non-essential items, and limiting grocery supply companies to present prospects.
A brand new report from The Wall Street Journal finds that in a bid to get customers to lighten the load, Amazon is now reversing course on many years of design and making an attempt to nudge customers to purchase lower than they in any other case would possibly.
One worker instructed the WSJ, “We typically want to sell as much as they can, but our entire network is so full right now with just hand sanitizers and toilet paper that they don’t have the capacity to serve other demand.”
In addition to scrapping upcoming promotions for Mother’s Day and Father’s Day it could ordinarily run, the WSJ stories, Amazon has additionally eliminated advice widgets, scaled again coupon promotions, and made different delicate modifications designed to make guests not fill their baskets with bodily items they in any other case would possibly impulse purchase. (Indeed, once I visited Amazon’s theybsite earlier, the entire instructed modules on the web page the place I normally see objects I’ve purchased prior to now now both relate on to the corporate’s COVID-19 response or are selling digital items and companies solely, together with Amazon Prime video and Kindle e-books.)
Sources inside the corporate instructed the WSJ that they don’t count on most of the modifications to be everlasting however that Amazon might have greater than two months from now earlier than it might return to its pre-pandemic methods.

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