SEATTLE & AUSTIN, Texas -- Amazon and Whole Foods Market Inc. have entered into a definitive merger agreement under which Amazon will acquire Whole Foods Market for $42 per share in an all-cash transaction valued at approximately $13.7 billion, including Whole Foods Market’s net debt.
“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, founder and CEO of Seattle-based e-commerce giant Amazon. “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.
Whole Foods Market will continue to operate stores under the Whole Foods Market brand and source from trusted vendors and partners around the world, the company said. John Mackey will remain CEO of Whole Foods Market, and Whole Foods Market’s headquarters will stay in Austin, Texas.
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.
Founded in 1978 in Austin, Texas, Whole Foods Market is a major natural and organic foods supermarket. In fiscal year 2016, the company had sales of approximately $16 billion and has more than 460 stores in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom.