Amazon’s domination of one-day and same-day delivery options might be closer to reality, at least within the UK. The online retail giant has worked out a deal to acquire a 4.2% share of delivery company Yodel from owners the Barclay brothers. This would add to Amazon’s growing number of holdings of companies who may not be wholly associated with the book business, but who can serve to improve Amazon’s ability to do what it does best.
According to an article on the deal for The Guardian, Amazon was offered the shares at an eyebrow-raising discount, but that news isn’t all that alarming considering that Yodel has been voted the worst delivery service in the country for two years in a row. Even independent bookshops have reported horror stories of trying to work with the company, including late deliveries, damaged shipments, and outright failure to deliver products. Its status as one of the worst shipping options is sad, considering it’s the number two shipping company in the UK in terms of volume.
Amazon has come under fire in the US for acquiring companies but still remaining distanced and silent when it comes to consumer demand for improvements. A growing number of authors held out hope that Amazon would intervene on the author bullying issue after Amazon acquired book review and discovery site Goodreads, but that hasn’t come to pass.
One thing that Amazon is passionate about, though, is customer service and experience. If this deal translates into using Yodel to maintain its high standards of delivery–especially in light of charging consumers for a Prime membership and offering stellar delivery options as part of that membership–it’s not likely that Amazon will let Yodel remain this low in the public perception for long.