After a year of speculation, the fate of Whole Foods has finally been determined: the independent, Austin-based purveyor of environmentally-conscious consumables is independent no longer. As of Friday morning, it’s been purchased by Amazon at a purchase price of $13.6 billion.
The journey of Whole Foods—and the immense challenges the company and its maverick CEO, John Mackey, have been under—are something Texas Monthly has focused on for the past several months, culminating in Tom Foster’s July cover story (hitting newsstands next week). For an in-depth look at how the chain went from the future of the grocery business to the property of Amazon, give “The Shelf Life of John Mackey” a read.
Mackey will stay on as CEO of Whole Foods, and in a statement released Friday, he expressed optimism about the opportunity provided to the company to be part of the cutting-edge enterprise that Amazon has built. “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,” Mackey said in a statement.
Amid all the jokes about “Alexa, help me spend my whole paycheck on organic produce” and sustainably-raised pork chops being at your door with two-day delivery via Prime shipping, it’s a huge move for both companies. To find out how we got here, read Foster’s story.