Amazon is scraping most of its private-label clothing brands as it looks to cut costs and sidestep antitrust scrutiny.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Amazon plans to eliminate 27 of its 30 private-label clothing brands, leaving the company with just Amazon Essentials, Amazon Collection, and Amazon Aware.
In addition, the eCommerce giant will be phasing out its private-label furniture brand, Rivet and Stone & Beam, once it runs out of its stock.
“If there are products that aren’t resonating with customers, we deprecate those and look for other opportunities to better meet their needs,” Matt Taddy, vice president of Amazon Private Brands, told Reuters.
While the company is publicly basing its decision on better aligning with customers’ needs, it was reportedly contemplating plans to exit its private label business as it sought to seek concessions in a long-awaited antitrust lawsuit the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is expected to file against the company.
The company has long been criticized for prioritizing its own products over those offered by sellers on its marketplace and for choking off competition by disfavoring outside sellers. These accusations have led the company to gradually reduce the number of products provided by its various private labels.
In 2020, the company offered some 243,000 products under 45 different private-label brands. Since then, the company has cut tens of thousands of products and reduced the number of private-label brands to fewer than 20.
The news comes ahead of Amazon’s planned meeting with the FTC this week, wherein it intends to argue that the agency should not open an antitrust case against the company.
Earlier this year, the FTC sued the company for signing up millions of users for its Prime subscription offering without their consent and making it harder for them to cancel the service.
In the lawsuit, FTC alleged that Amazon used “manipulative, coercive or deceptive user-interface designs known as ‘dark patterns’ to trick consumers into enrolling in automatically renewing Prime subscriptions.”
Originally published at https://retailbum.com on August 14, 2023.